Dr. Strange: Mysticism, Magic and Marvel

Allie Perry, Junior Staff Writer

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The Dr. Strange movie is one in a long line of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies based on the original Marvel comic series. The movie tells the origin story of Dr.Stephen Stratnge, a successful neurosurgeon. He lives a lavish and selfish life that is dedicated to his work and reputation.  However, Stephen’s vast knowledge does little to help him when he is in a nearly fatal car crash that immobilizes his hands. Without the use of his hands, Dr. Strange  is unable to perform surgeries or continue his career. Lost and destroyed by the thought of never operating again, he searches for a place named Kamar-Taj–a mystical training ground. When he finds Kamar-Taj, Strange is introduced a sorcerer named The Ancient One. He is taught the powers of the Mystic arts and is thrown into a battle to save the world.  Kaecilius, a sorcerer turned evil, stole an ancient spell to summon the ruler of the Dark Dimension with the promise of eternal life.

This is probably one of the first MCU movies that takes the viewer into a deeper mystical realm, which is really a reflection of the 60’s emphasis on Asian and Hindu philosophy at the time. According to an online article at fandom.com:  “With spells in Sanskrit and training in Nepal, the film took the MCU into an arena that fans hadn’t seen before. We may look at it as fiction, but the movie was more than mere fiction. The spells and powers that Doctor Strange acquires had specific references to Hindu mythology.” Some of those references include Shamballa and the Book of Vishanti.  So the movie is really much more than entertainment; it is a lesson on the myths of another culture.

This movie also served as a setup for sequels that will follow.  In preparation for upcoming movie Marvel series Infinity Wars, the six infinity stones that make up the gauntlet in the Infinity wars are introduced and repeated throughout marvel movies starting in The Avengers. The six infinity stones include: soul, time, space, mind, reality, and power. As of now, five of the six infinity stones have revealed themselves in the MCU. Most recently, the soul stone, eye of agamotto, was discovered by Doctor Strange in the movie named the same. He uses the eye of agamotto to defeat Kaecilius by turning back time and creating a paradox. The final infinity stone, the time stone, is still unknown to us, but will most likely be revealed before 2018 when the Infinity Wars begin.

The movie premiered on November 4, 2016, and was directed by Scott Derrickson. It has a 165 million dollar budget, and most of it was spent on the incredible graphics that can be seen in the film. The film stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange, a British actor most known for his work on BBC’s Sherlock and as the voice of the dragon Smaug in The Hobbit. His love interest is portrayed by Rachel McAdams, most known for The Notebook, The Vow, and Mean Girls. Rotten Tomatoes gave Doctor Strange a 90% approval rating, and it was given a 8/10 stars by IMDB.

The MCU has released the plan for future movies and the list looks very promising. Marvel fans have much to look forward to, to say the least. The movie has caused a lot of buzz in the Marvel community, and especially in HHSl. Long time fans like Junior Devin Lewis are very excited to see the film. According to Devin, “It should be a promising movie and I especially can’t wait to see the after movie end credit scene.” The movie even has people who are unfamiliar with the MCU franchise excited. After explaining the plot to junior, Chelsea Chabi, she said “I’ve never really seen a lot of Marvel movies, and I was never really into superhero movies, but it sounds pretty cool. I’ll definitely have to go see it.”  Certainly all viewers should be pleased with the mystical education, the effects and the story line that Dr. Strange delivers.

Sources:

‘Doctor Strange’s Magical and Mystical Roots in Hindu Mythology

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