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Doctor Strange (2016)

To combat Comic Book Movie Fatigue, Marvel has prescribed a maximum-strength amphetamine called Doctor Strange. Scott Derrickson’s mad metaphysical mélange gives genre fans everything they’ve seen before (arrogant playboy/reluctant hero; secret societies working to defend/destroy the world; portals opening over major cities), but played with slightly different rhythms than we’re accustomed to. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Stephen Strange, a neuroscientist who barely masks his near-villainous callousness with magnetic charisma. When a car accident destroys his hands, he embarks on a healing quest that lands him at the feet of The Ancient One (Tilda Swinton). She introduces Strange to an ancient order of spiritual Avengers, who protect against the dark god Dormammu and his acolytes. Doctor Strange teleports the MCU into realms where metal suits and radioactive strength are useless, where playing origami with buildings is a sidearm to the nuclear bomb of infinite time loops. Fatigue? Hell, Marvel’s just getting started.

Listen to Kicking the Seat Podcast #165 for a raucous roundtable discussion of Doctor Strange!