Hitting Screens, Week of October 31, 2016

mv5bmjm2oda4mtm0m15bml5banbnxkftztgwnze5otyxmdi-_v1_sy1000_cr006831000_al_The next in the Marvel line of comic adaptations opens on Friday, Doctor Strange, an expected blockbuster.

It is about an arrogant surgeon who suffers from a career-ending accident and seeks the mystic arts in an effort to heal himself, only to discover powerful beings and other dimensions.

Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Doctor Strange along with Chiwetel Ejiofor, Rachel McAdams, Benedict Wong, Michael Stuhlbarg, Benjamin Bratt, Scott Adkins, Mads Mikkelsen, and Tilda Swinton.

Early reviews are good. Variety calls it “Marvel’s most satisfying entry since Spider-Man 2, and a throwback to M. Night Shyamalan’s soul-searching identity-crisis epic Unbreakable, which remains the gold standard for thinking people’s superhero movies.”

Entertainment Weekly gives it a B+, writing it “mostly works very, very well” and crediting Benedict Cumberbatch and Tilda Swinton for the success, “two actors, who in addition to being intelligent, top-shelf stars both project a slightly alien, otherworldy air [and make the film] accessible and seductively engrossing … It’s eye candy and brain candy.”

9780316314138_8cd4fThere are tie-ins as well as related titles, including the film’s novelization, Marvel’s Doctor Strange: The Junior Novel, Marvel (Hachette/Little, Brown Books for Young Readers; OverDrive Sample) and Marvel’s Doctor Strange Prelude, Brian K. Vaughan, Jason Aaron, Stan Lee, et al. (Hachette/Marvel), a collection of previous comics highlighting the origin story and some of his adventures.

the-mistletoe-promise-9781476728209_hrAiring on The Hallmark Channel Nov. 5 is The Mistletoe Promise. Based on the novel by the “King of Christmas Fiction,” Richard Paul Evans, it stars Jaime King, Luke Macfarlane, and Lochlyn Munro.

It’s part of Hallmark’s “Countdown to Christmas,” which began on Saturday. It’s “Holiday Movies! All Day! All Night” through Christmas and beyond.

Hallmark describes the romance as “a chance meeting between two strangers who share a disdain for Christmas results in The Mistletoe Promise, a pact to help them navigate their holiday complications – together. But as they spend more time with each other and experience the magic of Christmas the phony couple discovers there may be more to their contract than business.”

9781501119798_d6cc2  9781501119811_ec707

There is not a direct tie-in but the book is still available (S&S; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample) as are the other two volumes in the “Mistletoe” collection, The Mistletoe Inn (S&S; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample),  last year’s seasonal offering, and The Mistletoe Secret (S&S; S&S Aduio), publishing on Nov. 15.

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