Tuesday, April 30, 2013
The first movie was the introduction to the character, the second was a bit of a disaster but essentially sets up a lot of the groundwork for The Avengers, so in a lot of ways, this is really the first true Iron Man movie unencumbered by needing to do anything other that tell a really interesting story.
Actually, I'm not even sure this is an Iron Man movie per say... if anything this is a Tony Stark movie.
The majority of the movie concentrates on Stark's own demons (in a way that the second movie tried to do but failed miserably), his flawed humanity without being an obnoxious brat and to a degree explores his relationship with the Iron Man suit... or the idea of Iron Man through the multiple suits that feature in the movie.
Without going into too much detail, it's Tony stripped bare, in fact while there are some great sequences involving the suits, especially the end battle sequence, he spends more time out of the suits than he does in them by far.
And I think partly because of that it very often feels like Stark is in genuine danger... it doesn't feel like "oh look, Bruce Wayne's back is broken, give him an inspirational montage and it'll be all better for the third reel".... this actually feels like the character is in danger from everything that's happening around him. Which I have to say is not something that you really get from superhero movies very much. It's all easily surmountable obstacles, but this doesn't feel like that at all.
Robert Downey Jr does a fantastic job once again as Stark... and as cliché as it sounds, it really does feel like this is the role his life lead him to... he's been at the top of his game, been brought all the way down to the bottom of the barrel and pulled himself up again by his proverbial bootstraps, and it feels very much like that's what Stark goes through to some degree in this movie.
It's also nice to finally see Gwyneth Paltrow get in on the action in her role as Pepper Potts, although overall it feels like she has less to her role this time around.
But Ben Kingsley essentially steals a chunk of the latter part of the movie in a way that I did not see coming. Some of his early scenes as The Mandarin feel maybe a little bit Villain Of The Week... but he really gets a chance to shine towards the end of the movie.
I still feel like Don Cheadle isn't the right choice for Rhodes/War Machine/Iron Patriot compared with Terrence Howard, although there's no denying that there's chemistry between Cheadle and Downey.
And speaking of chemistry, although the superhero befriending by young boy thing has been done any number of times, the dynamic between Downey and young Ty Simpkins is actually pretty great. And doubly so because I think they've written his character of Harley as a little bit of a Tony Stark Jr, so there's some great moments where they spark off each other.
As far as the look of the movie is concerned, it's pretty much flawless... sure, I would have loved to be able to see all the various Iron Man suits much more clearly at the end of the movie but because they're whizzing around all over the screen it's hard to tell sometimes what's an Iron Man suit and what's a henchman.
I assume that most of the time the Iron Man suits are CGI, even when the actors are just walking around in them, although there might be some practical suits... but it's impossible to tell the difference beyond the whole flying suit thing.
Like all of the Marvel movies so far, there's a post credit sequence, which pretty much all of the audience stuck around for. But, I have to be honest, I don't know that it's worth it. It is amusing, but it's not like the pre-Avengers sequences where they all revealed a little teaser about the next movie in the sequence... this is just amusing for the sake of being amusing.
yani's rating: 9 suit pieces out of 10