Doctor Strange Dark Sequel Demonstrates Despair We Feel at Life's Crossroad Moments [Spoiler-Free Review] – Hope 103.2

Doctor Strange Dark Sequel Demonstrates Despair We Feel at Life’s Crossroad Moments [Spoiler-Free Review]

In 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse if Madness', we meet Stephen Strange directly after the events of 'Spiderman: No Way Home'.

By Laura BennettTuesday 10 May 2022Hope AfternoonsMoviesReading Time: 3 minutes

For a franchise that boasts over 25 movies and various spin-off series, it’s amazing how the Marvel Cinematic Universe can weave together its characters and their mythology into some kind of cohesive whole – while still keeping each title unique.

Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is probably the most distinct of all, pulling his powers from the world of Eastern mysticism and spirituality, mastering the craft to defy mental and physical limitations in order to save the world.

In Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, we meet Stephen Strange directly after the events of Spiderman: No Way Home, where its revelations about the multiverse are built upon by his own experiences of the overlapping realities.

In one reality, Stephen meets newcomer America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez) who has the power to travel between universes without consequence. Wanda Maximoff, aka The Scarlett Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), wants to steal America’s powers so she can choose a reality that corrects the loss she experienced in Wanda Vision, and Stephen is trying to stop that from happening.

It’s a plot that takes a bit to follow and leaves you with questions in the same way any time-travelling movie might, but what stands out more than the story in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is how steeped in dark occultism it is.

Director Sam Raimi, whose credits include Tobey Maguire’s Spiderman trilogy as well as the Evil Dead franchise and Drag Me to Hell, was intentional in bringing his horror sensibilities to Doctor Strange, but for audiences who come to Marvel for a bit of adventurous escapism it will be quite the contrast.

Swinging between universes and proving Benedict Cumberbatch’s skill at acting in completely computer-generated worlds, Multiverse of Madness is often nightmarish and tugs at the despair we can feel in life’s crossroad moments as we realise their consequences.

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Stephen is continually confronted with how he handled his relationship with Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams) in the first Doctor Strange, and Wanda Maximoff is desperate to find a reality where she can be a mum again.

For the Christian viewer, the movie’s grounding in mystic arts can be uncomfortable, but interestingly we have great insight into the characters struggles.

For the Christian viewer, the movie’s grounding in mystic arts can be uncomfortable, but interestingly we have great insight into the characters struggles.

At the centre of our faith is a belief in two realities: our present human one, and a heavenly one that intermingles with our everyday lives and that will ultimately shape our eternity.

Our faith practices are all about the intersection between two, and seeing “God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven” [Matthew 6:10].

When we pray, we invite God into this reality, and when we grieve, we’re reminded that our sorrow is but for a time.

Stephen Strange and his entourage aren’t alone in their longing to experience a reality beyond the pain of their present one, and to wish for an opportunity to course-correct past mistakes, but it will shock some fans to see how far into the occult they go trying to satisfy that ache.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is in cinemas now rated M.