The Invincible Iron Man Reviews
It's not really that the movie is bad, but I never felt like it rose above that made-for-TV production. Considering this film was released straight-to-Dvd that would be perfectly fine, but then Hollywood went and released the excellent live-action film. There was never a second where I was glad I was watching this animated story instead of the theatrically released blockbuster instead. It really doesn't help that they're both origin stories for the character, so it's one, or the other and while once again, this movie isn't all that bad, it doesn't stand a chance.
The animation is consistent from frame to frame, but the quality of the motions and backgrounds are just ok. Several more detail-heavy elements/characters are created using computer then spliced in with the hand-drawn footage and the difference is pretty glaring. There are some nice twists on the origin of the Iron Man armor, but as an introduction to the classic Marvel hero, I never felt like I really got to know him very much and the villains get very little development. The Mandarin himself doesn't show up until late in the picture and the four elemental warriors Tony has to combat have no dialogue whatsoever. I didn't mind their designs, but the four elements thing has been done so many times that it didn't resonate with me at all. The Jade Dragons terrorists are a bit better but they feel more like plot devices than actual people and are even less memorable than everyone else present. Some of the things I enjoyed include the seriousness of the whole affair. This isn't a movie where they sugar coat the violence by having the bad guys wield laser pistols or people just fall down cliffs and disappear instead of actually dying. While there might not be any real blood, the genuine threat of death is real so there is some tension. As mentioned earlier, there is a pretty successful effort on mixing up the origin of the Iron Man armor and particularly towards the end there are some nice twists with the Mandarin as a villain.
The movie's biggest fault really is that it doesn't stand out. Sure for small children who want to be introduced to the character or will just gobble up anything Iron Man, this will be an entertaining watch but it's really just a stepping stone towards the beloved 2008 flick, the more elaborate comic book stories or the more... colourful animated series from the 90's. There isn't much here for adults who are fans of the character and comic book fans that are familiar with Tony Stark and his crew will be frustrated to see this story yet again. I can only give it a 2.5 out of 5 because of this but it's not a "bad" average rating, it's more of a "yeah, it's alright" kind of rating. (Dvd, November 11, 2013)
(Full review coming soon - with better wording probably)
starring the voices of Marc Worden, John McCook, Elisa Pensler Gabrielli, Rodney Saulsberry, Gwendoline Yeo, Fred Tatasciore, James Sie, John DeMita, and Stephen Mendillo.
directed by Frank Paur, Jay Oliva and Patrick Archibald.