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Check Out the Teaser Trailer for Marvel’s Doctor Strange

Thursday, April 14th, 2016 | Posted by John ONeill

I’m very excited by Marvel’s upcoming Doctor Strange movie, even more than I usually am by big-budget comic adaptations. And the brand new teaser trailer — featuring our first look at Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange, Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One, and Chiwetel Ejiofor as the sinister Baron Mordo — isn’t helping me stay calm at all.

I view Doctor Strange at the last major untapped Marvel property. The 1960s comic, by Stan Lee and the brilliant Steve Ditko, the team that created Spider-Man, created in Doctor Strange a truly unique comic character, a sorcerer-hero who learned to navigate the strange paths between our reality and the next, and in the process discovered an endless chain of bizarrely-connected — and frequently very dangerous — parallel dimensions. I had real fears the movie would gloss over that aspect of his origin story, or ignore it entirely, but this trailer has put those to rest. It’s going to be epic.

Doctor Strange is scheduled for release November 4. It also stars Rachel McAdams and Mads Mikkelsen, and is directed by Scott Derrickson (The Messengers, Sinister). See our previous coverage here and here. Derek Kunsken took a detailed look at Lee and Ditko’s original comic here and here.

13 Comments »

  1. I haven’t read the comics, but that movie looks terrible from the trailer.

    Benedict Cumberbatch continues to disappoint me.

    Though I did like The Imitation Game.

    Comment by Bob Byrne - April 14, 2016 7:04 am

  2. I respectfully disagree. Benedict Cumberbatch was the only thing i enjoyed about that trailer. Everything else seems way off the mark.

    I’ve been reading some Dr. Strange comics on Marvel Unlimited for the movie coming out late this year.

    I guess you just have to accept that the best version of a lot of these marvel characters is only going to exist in the comics and its too difficult/expensive to capture all the great things that happen on the page to the big screen.

    Comment by Glenn - April 14, 2016 7:50 am

  3. I also meant to add. I think this movie is going to have the same problem that i thought deadpool had. Its going to spend way to much time with the origin story and setting up the character that it never gets to the meat of any particular story.

    Comment by Glenn - April 14, 2016 7:53 am

  4. I must respectfully agree with John,

    I was a big Marvel comics reader back in the ’70s and ’80s. Much more a fan of Daredevil than Dr Strange, but show me a slick Matrix/Inception homage with some middle-east mysticism–and perhaps a skootch of X-Files weirdness on the side–and I’m all in 😉

    And seriously, this is one of the classiest casts in an age. The same way that, in my mind, Hugo Weaving, Lawrence Fishburn, Carrie-Anne Moss and Joe Pantaliano “made” the Matrix, I hope that Cummerbatch, Swinton, etc, can do the same for Strange :-)

    Comment by AWAbooks - April 14, 2016 9:21 am

  5. And I must agree with AWA and John. In fact, I was quite surprised by the negative perceptions reported in the comments above!

    I too was a big Marvel reader in the 70’s and 80’s, including Dr. Strange. Loved the Frank Brunner illustrations! The movie preview gave me no hesitations at all. And if to some degree they adopt the structure of Deadpool, my own feeling is that they could certainly choose worse!

    Lovely touch at the end of the preview: Strange approaches The Window. As small-town midwestern kid, I had never before seen such a marvelous window, devoid of ordinary boring straight lines. And Strange gazes through it to take in the city below. Perhaps suggesting the changed perspective of a changed man? At any rate, this small inclusion suggests to me that the creative team are really paying attention to details.

    Comment by jeffreycrogers - April 14, 2016 11:10 am

  6. How could I have forgotten Frank Brunner!

    Brunner on Strange, Jim Starlin on Warlock, Paul Gulacy on Shang-Chi, Jim Steranko on Nick Fury…those were the “monster-quality, ‘second-tier’ ” combos at Marvel that kept me coming back.

    Thanks for the memories, Jeffrey :-)

    Comment by AWAbooks - April 14, 2016 11:49 am

  7. I think they will feature the parallel dimensions, because it would be a kind of workaround about “the magic” – Problem, i.e. injecting magic in the universe.
    The last movies I didnt watch in the cinema were Antman, Guardians and Captain America 2, and I always regretted that. So I I wont make any comments reagarding quality… So far Marvels done a brilliant job, even on diffcult property.

    Comment by peer - April 14, 2016 1:02 pm

  8. It will be a hit or a catastrophic miss.

    Comment by Wild Ape - April 14, 2016 5:30 pm

  9. > It will be a hit or a catastrophic miss.

    That’s a pretty wide range, Ape! :)

    Comment by John ONeill - April 14, 2016 8:46 pm

  10. Yep. I’m thinking Jonah Hex or Guardians of the Galaxy.

    Comment by Wild Ape - April 14, 2016 10:25 pm

  11. I predict it being somewhere in the Thor-2-territory…Whatever THAT means!

    Comment by peer - April 15, 2016 3:00 pm

  12. @ peer–Although Thor 2 was a bust, I liked it anyway.

    Guardians of the Galaxy appeared in the Thing Two in One and had Captain America in it. It was one of the best Captain America stories and the team up of Cap and the Thing was very popular. It was written by Arnold Drake. I remember this because I was a comic fan and it remains one of my favorite comic stories of all time. Guardians got their first comic gig and it was a bust. I think they tried again and it fizzled. It wasn’t until Dan Abnett came to the scene with another release that the Guardians took off. It was a rarity because most comic teams were solid franchises or they appeared for a time and died off. The Guardians under Abnett became popular largely because Abnett is a guy who can write his ass off and make a team comic come alive. The movie adaption was closely tied to what Abnett and I forget who the writer was but he stuck close to what Abnett created. In my view, that was why it was a hit movie.

    Jonah Hex on the other hand was a great comic and the character defined weird western tales in comics. I’ve yet to see its match. The trouble with the movie was that it strayed from the comic a bit and it was poorly scripted. I thought the movie was a trainwreck but, hey, I’m a Jonah Hex fan so I went to see it and I like the movie because it is a Jonah Hex movie. Had the movie gone with a Clint Eastwood kind of feel and not a….whatever it was…it probably would have been a hit.

    I think comic movies are tricky and not everyone can create one. A writer has to have a good grasp of the character and the feel of the story. At its core Jonah Hex is a western with a bit of weirdness thrown in. It could have been a hit. It could have made the weird western genre explode into popularity.

    So when I say it could be a hit or a catastrophe, Dr. Strange faces the same risks as both Guardians of the Galaxy and Jonah Hex. I’ll probably have a copy on my shelf because I’m a fan of Dr. Strange whether or not it is a good movie. I hope that makes better sense to y’all.

    Comment by Wild Ape - April 15, 2016 11:51 pm

  13. I dont know what to make of THor 2. Its a decent movie. But I somehow feel that its the most they can make out of a movie featuring Thor.
    Imho the problem is that the feeling of Thor does not fit very well in the rest of the MSU. Thor has a “Lord of the rings” feel with it, but it doesnt want to be Fantasy, it wants a sueperhero movie, in line with Iron man. And that is … awkward? It feels like “the best they could have done give the parameters”, but thats a faint praise at best.
    I fear Docotr Strange might be the same; Feels like a bad fit to the universe they try to squeeze it into. Of course I hope for better than that!
    And like I said: Im apperently terrible at estimating how good these movies can be (the only MSU movie I didnt regret passing over in the cinema is the first captain America and that in part because of my pet peeve of having Germans speaking English with German accent with each other, instead, you know, German), so Ill wait for the secon trailer, I guess 😉

    Comment by peer - April 16, 2016 2:17 pm


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