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Doctor Strange, in the Multiverse of Madness, sees Stephen Strange trying to protect a mysterious teenage girl named America Chavez, from a threat hunting her across the Multiverse.
Pressed for time, Strange enlists the help of every Sorcerer he can find, but things take a turn for the worst when Wanda Maximoff, The Scarlet Witch, gets involved.
Spoilers Ahead (Click to Skip to Verdict)
Though I have my issues with the film, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is not a terrible film. In fact, one of the many things I enjoyed about Doctor strange 2, was how the movie expanded the magical landscape in the MCU.
By now I suspect everyone knows that The Scarlet Witch is the main bad of Doctor Strange 2, and through her many clashes with Stephen Strange, Multiverse of Madness did a brilliant job of introducing us to new spells and other forms of magic.
It was really impressive to see expert magicians bending and breaking the rules of the mystical arts all to achieve their goals. I especially enjoyed aspects like the defense of Kamar-Taj. But my favorite moment had to be Doctor Strange dreamwalking through death to face Wanda.
Another aspect of M.O.M worthy of praise was Dr. Strange’s character arc. While the first movie saw him trying to rediscover himself outside of his medical talents, Doctor strange 2 addresses his self-destructive ego and shows him how this character flaw ruins his life across the multiverse and leaves him alone.
Throughout The movie, the story confronts the good doctor with the same question “Are you Happy?” And it’s not until Strange admits the inner turmoil haunting him, that he finally finds peace & moves on.
But before he can answer that question, America Chavez arrives, and once it becomes clear, it’s Wanda hunting the poor girl. All hell breaks loose.
In many ways, Multiverse Of Madness was both a sequel to Doctor strange and an unofficial second season to WandaVision. But while the movie was decent in terms of Doctor Strange’s character arc, they dropped the ball with Wanda.
Rather than slowly show us Wanda’s gradual decline into the dark side, the film kicks off with her ready to murder hundreds of innocent people just to get her way. And throughout the film, her justification for wanting to strip Chavez of her powers (and kill her in the process) just kept getting thinner and thinner.
I understand that having lost her Brother and Vision, Wanda at least deserves to be with her kids. But the fact she could have easily recreated the twins using her chaos magic in some quiet part of the world and no one would know, utterly destroys her argument.
Heck, Strange, and Wong, even offer to take Wanda to the new universe with her kids, provided she doesn’t kill Chavez, but she says no. And I know we’re supposed to believe that Wanda is under the influence of the dark hold, but the movie makes the mistake of telling us rather than showing us.
However, my biggest issue with Multiverse of Madness is how the movie crams and rushes through several storylines.
All in the space of 120mins, the movie tries to cover Stephen Strange’s love life, Wanda’s quest for her children, and the Scarlet Witch Prophecy. While also trying to introduce us to America Chavez, the Multiversal Illuminati, and the concept of the Incursions.
I barely had any time to take in and appreciate any of these amazing moments before they were over. And because the movie was struggling for time, it couldn’t do justice to one of its main characters, Wanda, herself.
I feel Multiverse of Madness should have been longer, with its first part focusing on Strange assisting Wanda to find peace after the whole west view episode. And then over the course of the film, Wanda would then discover that Strange not only knew that her kids actually existed somewhere in the multiverse and didn’t tell her, but he had also been using dreamwalking to live a happier life with Christine.
This would have justified Wanda’s hatred for Strange and given her the grey area to go after her children. And assuming she didn’t kill anyone on purpose, she would have kept everyone’s sympathies.
But that’s just my opinion.
On paper, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness should have been epic. Built on the back of the wonderful series WandaVision, the movie had an awesome story to pick up from, and enough cameos and Easter eggs to keep core Marvel fans happy.
But what ruined everything was its execution, as the film breezes through its story & several important moments, to conclude with a standard and predictable Disney ending.
P.S: Though it is graphic for a PG-13 film, Multiverse of Madness is far from a horror movie.
- Good Acting
- Awesome Magic
- Decent Character arc for Dr. Strange
- Rushed Storyline & Plot
- Poor Character Arc for Wanda Maximoff
- Poor CGI at Certain Points of the Movie.