Iron Man Reviews
I don't mind that they're primarily Arabs, but I do mind how they're portrayed. They're complete morons with no human qualities and are the biggest flaw in this movie. And of course the main evil guy, which is you can tell is evil from a mile away, is the typical white rice guy drunk with power. Been there, done that. They're acting was also pretty sub-par compared to Paltrow and Downey.
The special effects of course I must mention. They were amazing and really brought Iron Man to life. In that department, the movie gets 5 stars.
And finally, I know Stark is supposed to be a witty guy and all but I think it was tad overdone. For every moment he was serious, there were five moments where he was cracking jokes. A better balance of the two would have made the film much stronger.
In the end it was pretty enjoyable film and I hope the second one is much better. Until then though, the first Spider-man film is still in my opinion a better a superhero movie.
The Marvel Universe is complex and sprawling, with a new superhero added to the mix seemingly on a daily basis, and new movies coming out every couple of months or so. However, as ginormous as the MU is, everything has to start small from somewhere. Enter Iron Man, the movie that kickstarted the whole shabang. Iron Man serves as a perfect introduction into the sprawling world that is the Marvel Universe, as well as being a great stand-alone movie in its own right.
The movie begins with "Back In Black" by AC/DC as we're introduced to Tony Stark- played by Robert Downey Jr- A snarky millionaire playboy weapons manufacturer that always gets his way. Downey gives an absolutely brilliant performance as Stark. He plays the role perfectly, and while he nails the snark and sarcasm of Stark down pat, he also knows when to be serious. Downey brings a perfect blend of fun, sarcasm, and drama.
However, Stark, in Iraq to showcase his latest weapon, gets a taste of his own medicine when radical terrorists attack him and his convoy with his own weapons. He's blown up by his own missile, captured, and kept alive via a pacemaker powered by a car battery, and demanded by said terrorists to build a super missile. The pacemaker, however, gives Stark the idea to build himself a suit of Iron to escape the terrorists' base (and that he does).
Back in America and armed with his experiences, Stark shuts down his weapon's company and builds himself a metal suit inspired by the terrorist escape (ironically enough not made from iron) to fight evil and clean both himself and the world up.
The characters are very, very well written, especially Stark. He's motivated by the fear that the world is crumbling because of his actions, and an intense feeling of guilt and self-loathing. We get the feeling that before Iron Man, he was very self-medicated, and was living an empty lifestyle trying to make up for it with women and booze, and afterwords out to fix what he thinks is wrong.
This definitely makes Stark a very relatable character. While most of us will most likely not become millionaire playboys anytime soon, in the end he's someone vying for change. He makes mistakes, has setbacks, but in the end is just a guy trying to fix both himself and the world, which fits well with Downey's comeback story.
The story is also fast, entertaining, funny, and best of all, never takes itself too seriously. The writers knew what they were doing and where they wanted the story, and Jon Favreau does an excellent job in keeping the story light on its feet.
Hinging everything together is the excellent cast. Besides Downey Jr., you have Jeff Bridges who plays the corporate-partner-turned-baddie Obadiah Stane, Gwyneth Paltrow as Stark's personal assistant (and love interest?) Pepper Potts, and Terrence Howard as Rhodey, Stark's right hand man. The relationships between these characters and Stark feels organic and well-developed, and each actor/actress plays their role extremely well.
While the overall story is good, the writing gets sketchy in some places. For example, in a scene where Potts is replacing Stark's chestpiece, Stark tells her not to pull out a magnet that's apparently important. She accidently does and Stark starts going into cardiac arrest, but the chestpiece is eventually replaced without another hitch. Stark seems totally fine with the new arc reactor, despite an apparently important piece being pulled out and never replaced.
I will admit however, these are just nitpicks. Iron Man serves as a fantastic movie that won't bore regular audiences and won't insult fans of the comics, and also serves as a great kickstart to the Marvel Universe that begins to help establish Stark as a central character in the MU... even if it gave us those infamous end-credit scenes.