There’s No Shortage of Madness in the New Doctor Strange Sequel

The Journalism crew reppin the set in front of the Doctor Strange poster.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is the kind of movie you have to watch a handful of times to fully understand everything that happens. In his second feature movie in the Doctor Strange series, Benedict Cumberbatch proves that he will be a key part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) moving forward. Elizabeth Olsen blew us away as we saw her character, the Scarlet Witch, in a new kind of way. In the previous films she’s been in, she was never the center of attention, but in her series, “WandaVision”, and this movie, she has blossomed into a dark, mysterious, and magical antagonist. Xochitl Gomez’s character, America Chavez, brings a fresh demographic to this movie and is a key part of the madness.

Steven Strange quickly finds himself protecting a young woman, America Chavez, from Wanda Maximoff, who is now fully embracing her identity as the Scarlet Witch. Chavez has a unique ability to travel the multiverse and open portals to different universes on command, and Wanda wants this ability for herself. Wanda has been falling prey to the darkhold, the booked of the damned, which holds dark spells and unspeakable power. All Wanda wants is to be with her kids who are not in this universe, universe 616, so she has to dream walk in order to be with them. This consists of Wanda tossing her consciousness into another Wanda in a different universe. She’s been looking to turn this into reality which she would be able to do with Chavez’s ability. As we were all expecting, the movie jumps around the multiverse; starting in the original universe, then finishing in universe 638 with a lot of random universes thrown in between.

Like most Marvel movies, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness was heavily anticipated. The film grossed a sum of over $185 million over the weekend. “Opening night has been a great turnout. 735 people saw the movie today”, said Claire, a Regal Cinema employee. When asked about the turnout compared to recent Marvel movies, “it was pretty close to the Spiderman turnout, but it was much bigger than the Morbius opening day,” Claire said. Although there the movie cashed out big, not everyone was on board. “I personally don’t think it lived up to the hype, said Alex Saglamer, a Marvel fan who saw the movie over the weekend. “It was kind of hard to follow, and they tried to have horror moviesque qualities where they should have just done what they usually do,” Saglamer said. The sequel has a rotten tomato score of 75 percent, which is below the average for Marvel movies.

Sam Reimi took the role of director. Reimi has a history of directing horror movies, and you can see that influence in parts of the movie. Clearly, this movie isn’t your typical horror movie, but it has classic horror tropes that we have never seen before in the MCU. For example, in one scene where Doctor Strange and America Chavez were trying to stop Wanda, Wanda was covered with blood, and chased them through an underground tunnel. This is your classic example of the serial killer chasing down its next victim. This scene ended with a jump scare, which we have never seen before in a Marvel movie. Also, the most frightening part of the movie came when Strange dream walked into a dead, rotten version of himself in order to find Wanda on Universe 616 when he was on 638. In these scenes, Strange’s body was partially rotten away, which could be very graphic for some of the younger viewers of this movie. Also, Wanda murders the members of the Illuminati in the most brutal fashion. The scene looked like it was done by Jason from Friday the 13th.

As we continue down the MCU timeline, the movies continue to get more and more complex. The average viewer of MCU films may walk out of the theaters utterly confused. With that being said, it is definitely the type of movie that requires you to refresh your memory on the entirety of the MCU to not be completely confused during the movie. At the very least, we recommend you watch the first Doctor Strange movie, “Spider-Man: No Way Home”, “WandaVision”, and a couple of “What If?” episodes before going to see the chaotic Doctor Strange sequel. Overall, we would give this movie a 7.7 out of 10.