Geeks Take Over the Box Office – REVIEWS: ‘Doctor Strange,’ ‘Arrival,’ “Fantastic Beasts’

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It is a VERY good time for us geeks to head to the movies…

Geek culture has taken over the box offices worldwide thanks to a new Marvel hero, an emotional alien film and dare I say adult Wizarding World film.

Don’t just see one of the featured films; Doctor Strange, Arrival, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – see ALL of them! You will not be disappointed. Not only are all three entertaining, they are engaging and intelligent.


Doctor Strange

Doctor Strange

Even when Marvel takes a risk it always seems to work out. Doctor Strange took over the box office and received wonderful reviews, some even stating it was the best superhero film of the year (cough, cough – Civil War?)

Doctor Strange fulfills the magic needs you wished films like The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Percy Jackson, and Seventh Son fail to do with just enough Marvel flare. Though the film did travel a bit (more like a very wee bit) out of the typical Marvel style, traveling further than previous Marvel risk films like Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant Man but never too far north that you would forget. Some would say the film was too much Marvel – in my reply “hey dumb dumb aren’t we paying to see a Marvel film.”

The origin film for Doctor Strange gives Marvel fans hope for life after Infinity War. Will a seemingly carbon copy of Tony Stark – Dr. Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) be the hero we need to keep the MCU going? Most likely. I don’t hate Strange, I very much enjoyed him, I just don’t want Tony Stark 2.0. It would seem that Marvel is planning on expanding the character in the MCU – Warning Spoiler – since he will be popping up in Thor: Ragnarok. I am excited see how Strange will fit in the MCU, he is already neighbors with Stark so…

Now to be an annoying feminist for a hot second, what the heck was up with Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams)? Marvel is usually WAY BETTER at making the female leads a bit more dynamic. Don’t get me wrong Christine is a badass doctor but all of her conversations involved Strange. Though technically the film did pass the Bechdel Test due to The Ancient One (Tilda Swinton), Christine failed.

Doctor Strange a wickedly interesting and amusing take on the Marvel film. I mean hello there is MAGIC, myths, and mystery. Though it will never beat the BEST SUPERHERO movie EVER – Captain America: Winter Solider, the film and Dr. Stephen Strange gives the MUC a feeling of rejuvenation which will hopefully continue with the upcoming releases of Black Panther and Captain Marvel.


Arrival

Arrial

What could one say about Arrival that has not been said before…

This film is breathtakingly beautiful and possibility the best film of the year. That will leave you feel every emotion. The film is larger than simply being about an alien invasion. The core of the film is about communications and the idea that both love and lost go hand in hand. Arrival is emotional, intelligent, mature, and raw. Amy Adams is sheer perfection and delivers a brilliant performance but when does she not.

I literally don’t have one bad thing to say about the film. There is literally no better time then now to watch this film, in a world where we need to communicate and begin to mend and come together. Make sure to bring tissues because if Arrival does not leave you feeling overwhelmed with emotion then you should probably see a doctor to make sure you still have a heart!


Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Fantastic

Simply joyful, dark, and of course magical.

All Potterheads would be lying if the idea if this film not only excited them but also scared the sh*t out of them!

Though – at the moment (leaving out spoilers) – Fantastic Beast is not part of the Harry Potter timeline it is within the Harry Potter world we have grown up with and love. Fantastic Beast does deliver on the whimsy that we come to know from the Wizarding World, the film also seems to show an aging process. Most of the audience that went and will go see this film grow up with the Harry Potter series and are now adults themselves, though Fantastic Beasts has enough for children the film feels more adult then past Harry Potter films. The film is darker and cynical – much like what one could assume will be the series’ Big Bad.

You can not help to adore Newt Scamander which his kindness, awkward charm, love and passion for his work and “beasts,” the real charm of this film would be Jacob Kowalski. It is simple Kowalski represents all us Muggles (I will NEVER call myself a no-maj…sorry). Kowalski captures how we all felt the first time we were introduced to the wonder that is the world that JK Rowling. Which is important to be reminded of with this new story. It was pure joy to watch him through out the film and look forward to seeing him in more films…

While on the top of more films, Fantastic Beasts was a wonderful first film in a long series – that was what it was and “first film.” One could assume that production knew that more films were to follow so while the film did end nicely, it also set up a lot of upcoming storylines and we have so many unanswered questions.

On a personal level, it was a bit rough to hear the words Madam President several times through out the film, you know since a certain election…but this too shall pass.

The world of Harry Potter will never truly leave us and now we have a chance to watch it expand with the Fantastic Beasts series, which feels very different but also the same.

Now all together, “we call them Muggles!”


Doctor Stranger, Arrival, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them are all currently playing in a theater near you.

It would seem that the Holiday Season is the new Summer Blockbuster tim check out the upcoming releases of…

Moana – November 22nd, La La Land – December 16th, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – December 16th, Passengers – December 21st.

Looking for some Indie Darlings? Check out these films now playing:

Moonlight, The Edge of Seventeen, Manchester By the Sea, and Lion

Kait Calabrò

Kait Calabrò

Lady Kaitlin Marie Bernadette Calabrò of House Ravenclaw, First of Her Name; Mother of Recaps, Breaker of News, Khaleesi of Wonder Wharf, Queen of Geekdom, and Empress of Anglophiles, is the Managing Editor of AGtM.  By day she is the Marketing Manager of the Philadelphia Film Society, by night she is a serious relationship with her Netflix account. Kait is a proud Temple Owl! And is currently in a celebrity feud with both Samuel L. Jackson and Zachary Levi, unbeknownst to them. She spends her evenings watching the skies waiting for Thor to fly down and take her back to Asgard!
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