Just from the recent TV spots released for Doctor Strange, you get a sense that the movie is going to be fun and visually spectacular. But there's also a sense that Parts 2 and 3 are going to be where this particular character really comes into his own, as it has been in previous Marvel Sequels. There is always an odd air swirling about all the first entries in every standalone Marvel franchise, and it sounds like this latest installment doesn't escape that sense of origin fatigue. Though, that said, the reviews that have come in so far call it an eye-popping spectacle that demands to be seen in IMAX 3D.
Apparently, the key action set pieces are worth the ticket price alone. And that's saying a lot, as most IMAX 3D tickets cost upwards of $30 here at the end of 2016 as theaters continue to jack up their prices amidst waning ticket sales. But the Marvel movies haven't failed to bring in audiences yet. And it doesn't sound like Doctor Strange is going to be their first bomb.
In fact, early projections claim the movie could pull in upwards of $75 million during its opening weekend. That's a far cry from the $95 million Guardians of the Galaxy brought in back in 2014. But for this particular character, who isn't as well know or mainstream as Captain America or Iron Man, this will be quite the coup if Marvel pulls it off. The low end of the pool has Doctor Strange landing around $50+ million. But we'll have to wait and see how it fares when it opens November 4. It should hold onto the top box office spot for the few weeks heading into the Thanksgiving holiday. Here's the official synopsis from Marvel and Disney.
"From Marvel Studios comes Doctor Strange, the story of world-famous neurosurgeon Dr. Stephen Strange whose life changes forever after a horrific car accident robs him of the use of his hands. When traditional medicine fails him, he is forced to look for healing, and hope, in an unlikely place-a mysterious enclave known as Kamar-Taj. He quickly learns that this is not just a center for healing but also the front line of a battle against unseen dark forces bent on destroying our reality. Before long Strange-armed with newly acquired magical powers-is forced to choose whether to return to his life of fortune and status or leave it all behind to defend the world as the most powerful sorcerer in existence."
We've collected the early reaction tweets below. You may recognize some of the critics who attended the early Doctor Strange screening, and they seem to be fairly honest about the movie. It's not the best Marvel movie, or even in the top five, as a few of them point out. But the movie pushes boundaries. It's not the typical Marvel movie. It's weird, wild and a fun time. That said, these guys were all courted by Disney and Marvel and they aren't likely to say anything too harmful about the movie as to tarnish their own reputation with the Mouse House.
Along with these early reactions, we also have 2 new clips featuring Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange. And we get to see some of the praise play out, and why the movie may have garnered some of the reactions it did. Doctor Strange is the second installment in Marvel Phase 3, arriving after Captain America: Civil War earlier this summer. It will be the last new Marvel movie or TV show of the year. But next year, we have quite a lot to get excited about. We'll see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Spider-Man: Homecoming next summer, and then Thor: Ragnarok around this same time. And on the TV side of things, we're getting Iron Fist and The Punisher in their own standalone Netflix series. It certainly is a wonderful time to be a Marvel superhero fan. Take a look at these clips courtesy of Marvel.
DOCTOR STRANGE magic makes HARRY POTTER's look like parlour tricks. Dark & spooky psychedelic horrors, abracadabra wowie zowie. Loved it— Josh L. Spoockey (@JLDlite) October 20, 2016
Prepare to dig #DoctorStrange! Not the strongest script, but it legitimately adds new colors to the MCU, and the action is beautiful & crazy— Evil Eric Eisenberg (@eeisenberg) October 20, 2016
DOCTOR STRANGE is unlike any previous Marvel movie and that’s why I love Marvel. They keep pushing boundaries and make it look easy.— Steven Weintraub (@colliderfrosty) October 20, 2016
I wouldn't put #DoctorStrange in Marvel's top five but it's an entertaining movie with big ideas, gorgeous CGI and unique action sequences.— Wolfman Bibbiani (@WilliamBibbiani) October 20, 2016
Doctor Strange's action set pieces make an MC Escher paintings look tame. Some really great, clever, incentive stuff. Worth the 3D ticket.— Peter Sciretta (@slashfilm) October 20, 2016
DOCTOR STRANGE is guilty of *all* the usual Marvel movie problems, but Tilda & some VERY trippy visuals make it a spectacle worth savoring.— david ehrlich (@davidehrlich) October 20, 2016
#DoctorStrange is definitely Marvel's strangest movie to date, but it's weird & wild in all the best ways. Incredible imagery, heady story— ErikDavis (@ErikDavis) October 20, 2016
#DoctorStrange isn't one of Marvel's very best, but it is still a very entertaining and visually dazzling movie with plenty of highlights.— Eric Goldman (@TheEricGoldman) October 20, 2016