Sunday, 30 October 2016

A Pinoy @ The Movies: Doctor Strange

          (Doctor Strange movie poster)

This movie made it worth my getting out of bed early on a Sunday morning! Tickets to early morning screenings (before 12 noon) are discounted; and if I could just wake up early, I could save KRW5,000. And I did!

And who doesn't like Benedict Cumberbatch and his acting?

 In Star Trek Into Darkness, he was Khan, an emotionless superhuman. Here, in Doctor Strange, he's a surgeon who became a sorcerer.

Doctor Strange is probably the best Marvel movie in years. Unlike the Avengers series where there are too many characters and too many fighting scenes in too many cities making you forget who's really fighting whom, Doctor Strange offers just one mesmerizing lead character played by one mesmerizing actor.

Doctor Strange reminds me of Inception (where buildings and streets turn upside-down), House M.D. (about an arrogant doctor who's always full of himself), and Harry Potter (where you get your own weapons and a special cloak). 

But it's the movie's comic book style of storytelling that makes it a good movie: slow, clear, great special effects and funny! The action scenes didn't have to be Avenger-ish to impress. Even if the buildings and streets turned 360-degrees during chases, it was superbly done with no one getting dizzy inside the cinema. 

I wasn't surprised Tilda Swinton was cast as the Ancient One, the hairless, lead sorcerer who taught the Cumberbatch find his powers. Tilda was always effective as a fantasy character in costumes like she was as the White Witch in Narnia. She was funny in Grand Budapest Hotel with Ralph Fiennes and impeccable in an American accent in Michael Clayton, where she won an Oscar.

Early this year, I watched Benedict Cumberbatch play Hamlet with all his British-ness at the National Theater of Korea. But this morning, I walked for 15 minutes from my apartment, braving the 3'C temperature to watch him speak in an American accent in one of the best superhero movies in years.

    (Pinoy lunch of dinuguan, kare-kare 
        and pancit after Doctor Strange)

Inside the theater were mostly kids with parents who probably also woke up early for the screening. As the movie was over by noon, I headed to the pinoy market at Hyewha-dong for a Filipino lunch. Sadly, the restaurant run by 'Ed' always didn't have 'bago-ong' for their 'kare-kare'. 

Early morning screening or not, I highly recommend Doctor Strange, and don't leave the theater once the closing credits show up as there are a couple of post-credit scenes. You don't want to miss Thor with a mug of beer as well as the last quote of the movie:

"Because I see it now what's wrong with the world. Too many sorcerers." 

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