Last night I got to see what amounted to an extended trailer for Doctor Strange, in IMAX 3D. At one time not too long ago, 3D movies were a real draw to me. I remember dragging Jay to several 3D re-releases of movies we’d seen a million times before (but only in boring old 2D). After intensive therapy (mainly arm punches from Jay), I’m mostly over that phase.
Nowadays, I usually see movies without the dopey extra glasses, but after last night’s sneak peek I am convinced that I should see Doctor Strange in 3D, punching be damned. The visuals are trippy enough to live up to Steve Ditko’s acid trip 60s backgrounds, depicting all the crazy dimensions that Doctor Strange passed through on his adventures, and that’s a high bar!
The preview’s centrepiece was an absolutely incredible city chase sequence, with gravity changing constantly, New York City collapsing onto itself, and destruction raining down on all sides as copies of buildings collide with each other. Other scenes included nightmare dimensions full of grabby baby hands, fractal patterns expanding and contracting as Doctor Strange plummets through them, and a bunch of other stuff I can’t even begin to describe.
Marvel has done a great job of translating its characters to the screen while retaining the soul of the comic, particularly for second tier characters (with Iron Man and Guardians of the Galaxy being the best examples). Doctor Strange seems set to follow that same path and with those other movies having paved the way, seems destined to depart at least a bit from the tried and true formula that we have seen way too often.
Whether the movie actually ends up being worthwhile is yet to be determined, but with a stellar cast (including Benedict Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Mads Mikkelson), an hour of IMAX-specific footage, the report that Marvel had to adapt the visuals to make the 2D version make sense, and the amazing effects in the preview, IMAX 3D is the clear platform of choice to view Doctor Strange’s adventures when the film opens November 4th.