A phantasmagorical and psychedelic festival for the eyes Doctor Strange is as worthy of a place in the MCU as Thor is of Mjolnir.
2016 was a brilliant year for Marvel Studios with the release of Captain America: Civil War and Doctor Strange helping distributor Walt Disney Studios become the first production company to gross $7billion, breaking global box office records. As the fourteenth cinematic feature released by Marvel, Doctor Strange has become an important part of the canon having finally exposed fans to the little explored multiverse and mystic arts through the introduction of the newest (potential) Avenger, Doctor Steven Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch).
Although some found the final showdown to be anti-climactic, upon release Doctor Strange was received with much excitement and boasts an enviable 90% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes. The film itself is a fantastical, psychedelic visual feast that overcomes the trappings of an origin story with an invigorating tale of man and magic as he seeks to heal himself after a tragic accident.
The Blu-ray release itself is a worthy addition to any shelf as the high definition presentation is practically perfect in every way, a vitally important feature for such a visually stunning film. As with all releases, the disc includes a commentary track with writer/director Scott Derrickson but whilst he is insightful and provides in-depth scene-specific information it is a little dissatisfying to find that much of what he discusses can be found in the infinitely more entertaining featurettes that offer an excellently detailed look at the production with engaging insights from the cast and crew. The deleted scenes are what you might expect with the exception of one heart-warming scene involving a dog which really should have been in the final cut. Avengers Assemble still holds the title of best gag reel but seeing Benedict Cumberbatch make a fool of himself is pretty brilliant in its own right.
Doctor Strange (2016), directed by Scott Derrickson, is released in the UK on DVD and Blu-ray by Walt Disney Studios. Certificate 12A.