02
May
08

Movie Review: Iron Man

 

 

 

 

 

 

The popcorn superhero summer blockbuster you’ve been waiting for.

 

Starring Robert Downey, Jr., Terrence Howard, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Jeff Bridges. Directed by Jon Favreau.

 

This movie doesn’t waste any time.

 

But let me get to the story: Tony Stark (Downey, Jr.) was the son of Howard Stark, who blazed forth a career in weapons manufacturing, in the process creating Stark Enterprises. Tony grew up a math/science prodigy, eventually taking over the business at the age of 21. His partner was Obadiah Stane (Bridges) who ran the company between Howard’s death and Tony’s ascension. Tony grew up designing some of the top weapons systems in use.

 

“Hey, get to the part where he becomes Iron Man!” – some fanboy behind me.

 

Alright, alright. So we see Tony as he is now: an alcoholic, womanizing billionaire playboy who can’t go anywhere without having a fifth of scotch. After testing his new missile, Jericho, the military envoy he’s in is attacked and he’s taken hostage. For three months he designs a giant robot suit (instead of another Jericho missile) with parts from his own weapons. He escapes and is eventually rescued by his military friend Jim Rhodes (Howard).

 

“Dude, be Iron Man already!” –another fanboy.

 

Anyways… Stark comes back and wants to make the world a better place, citing the fact that his weapons are being used to murder innocent people. He is locked out by Stane, who has been double-dealing weapons under the table. With the help of Pepper Potts (Paltrow) he gets back on his feet and designs what is to become Iron Man. After a “test” run in a small Middle Eastern town, Iron Man is green for Go. Trouble is that Stane gets his plans on the “original’ Stark made, and creates Iron Monger. Inevitably, there is the face-off between the two.

 

“Oh! Yeah!” – someone is geeking out because Starks is adding the “custom colors.”

 

I honestly liked this movie. For starters, I didn’t feel like I was watching a movie until the 2/3-of the-way-through point, which is a good thing (especially for the superhero genre). Favreau did a great job in making Stark someone you should hate, but had sympathy for. I never read “Iron Man” growing up. If I was a lot younger, or had seen this movie when I was a kid, I would’ve been more inclined to read the comics.

 

I’m sorta at a loss here. I want to find something overly wrong with this film, but can’t. I hate to be surrounded by people and everybody praising that ONE thing; I like finding something that could’ve been done better. It could’ve been a little less popcorn-y, it could have strayed from the “superhero” formula, etc. But then, it wouldn’t be this film. In my opinion, this ranks up in Top Superhero Flicks list with “Superman,” “Batman Begins,” and “Spider-Man.”

 

Kudos to everyone involved. Great storytelling. The soundtrack really fit the movie. Also, congrats to Marvel for releasing this as their first SELF-FINANCED movie. Downey is great, Howard is good, Bridges is having fun playing the bad guy, and Paltrow makes me wish I was Chris Martin.

 

Time will tell as to how it will stack up with other superhero films, but it’s already farther than “Daredevil,” or Ang Lee’s “Hulk.”

 

My grade: A.

 

“Dude, if you are a fanboy, you’ll need to stay ‘til the end of the movie. Trust me.” –actual guy in theater. No joke.

 

Stay after the end credit credits whereupon you’ll see Tony Stark come home to find someone looking out his living room window. That man is Samuel L. Jackson, and he’s playing Nick Fury, Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.

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