My prediction is this. Every time a new super hero movie comes out, lots of critics and fans are going to exclaim “This is the best super hero movie ever made.” There are lots of reasons for that. You go back and watch Christopher Reeve in Superman, or the TV series from the ‘50s. It looks fake when Superman flies. Of course you like the new super hero movies better. It’s like the argument I had with my guitarist friend in 8th grade. He was listening to Van Halen, saying how their version of You Really Got Me was better than the Kinks. I said “I hope so. The Kinks did it in 1964, and VH not only has, well…one of the best guitarist in rock history, they have better recording equipment.
The digital effects here are used perfectly, and might make you never want to watch an older super hero movie again. Some fans are going to like the fact that in the new Batman series of films, Christian Bale plays it so dark. I prefer my super hero the way Robert Downey, Jr. perfectly plays the sardonic Tony Starks. He’s smart, arrogant, and enjoys sleeping with women. We never saw Clark Kent seal the deal with Lois Lane, did we? Starks has more of a James Bond feel (instead of gadgets in the Aston Martin, they’re all on his Iron Man suit).
This is the first comic book movie that Marvel has produced and completely financed, and it looks MARVELous. I can’t believe that Jon Favreau, who I loved so much in Swingers, could direct such a film.
Starks is an international weapons dealer and billionaire. While taking photos with soldiers and being his humorous self, jihadists capture him. They want him to recreate some weapons for them. He’s not stupid. He instead makes something for himself to escape. The scenes that show him building it is mesmerizing. The sounds, the way it was shot…you feel like you’re trapped in that stuffy hot cave watching him realistically build this contraption. I was thinking how crazy it was that Tim Robbins spend 20 years digging out of a wall in Shawshank when he could’ve just built this thing!
The suit Starks builds is the what will become the Iron Man suit later. It’s interesting to watch him subtly change into a different person when he wears the suit and starts fighting crime. Downey has a way of throwing lines out that just seems so natural. There are also some interesting visuals with Downey working on his heart. He’s got a few problems with his (let’s just say, it’s not high cholesterol or blood pressure).
The supporting cast is strong in this. I’m not the biggest Gwenyth Paltrow fan, but her chemistry as Pepper Potts, is cute. Two actors that have great voices that command respect are in this – Jeff Bridges and Terrence Howard. It’s as if Bridges really wanted to shed the Dude image, as his head is completely shaven.
Clark Gregg is an actor that I’m convinced should play every CIA or FBI part Hollywood has to offer.
Of course you’ll see co-creator Stan Lee pop up in a cameo, along with Favreau, and Ghostface Killah.
I overheard a woman at Starbucks a few days ago telling her friend “I’m not gonna see that. I hate super hero movies.” I hate comments like that in regards to movies. You can say you hate rap, or country music. Those genres might not be pleasing to your ears; but a good movie is a good movie. I used to say I didn’t like musicals – but I like Grease and Chicago (even got the soundtrack to both). I used to say I didn’t like westerns, mostly because my stepdad would sit in front of the TV and watch these boring old films. Yet I love The Shootist, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Shane, High Noon, and a few of the recent ones like Unforgiven and 3:10 to Yuma. That’s because a good movie is a good movie, whether it’s horror, raunchy comedy, or super hero. And this is a good movie that you’ll like, even if you “don’t like super hero movies.”
The ending is excellent, although I didn’t stay during the credits. I heard there’s an extra scene at the very end.
I’m giving this an A- (it did have a few minor flaws), and since we heard some Black Sabbath at the end of the movie, I’m going to take my friends advice and incorporate the lyrics to their song Iron Man into the end of this review. It’ll be their lyrics, with my response to what the movie was about. Enjoy (even if you hate heavy metal):
Has he lost his mind/Can he see or is he blind? (of course he can see, there’s that small slit for his eyes to see out of)
Can he walk at all/Or if he moves will he fall? (he can walk or run, but with that bulky suit, flying is his fastest option)
Is he alive or dead? (well, it’s a live human inside the iron man outfit)
Has he thoughts within his head (Uh, see above…he’s human, so he has a brain)
We’ll jus seet him there/Why should we even care? (well, because there’s a war in Iraq, and this suit just might be what keeps peace all around the world)
He was turned to steel/In the great magnetic field (no, the jihadists just threw him in a cave, it was hardly magnetic)
When he travelled time/for the future of mankind (I don’t think you were paying attention, Ozzy. He traveled to different countries, but never time traveling).
Nobody wants him…(uh, the gorgeous models he slept with sure did, and Pepper Potts got rather jealous of them, so I’m guessing she wants him to).
Okay, enough of that. You can buy that Sabbath record, or catch me at your local karaoke bar. Just make sure you catch Iron Man. You’ll be glad you did.