Monday, April 30, 2012

Iron Man (2008)

Rating: 4!

Iron Man kicks off Avengers Week starring Robert Downey, Jr., Jeff Bridges, and Gwyneth Paltrow.

This is how superhero movies should be done. Iron Man has given us a different take on the superhero that The Dark Knight gave us. It's actually interesting timing that these two came out in the same year since they are counterparts for both of the major comic labels.

Tony Stark (Downey, Jr.) lives everyday as he wishes, being a billionaire playboy genius who took over his father's military defense company, Stark Industries, after a car accident made him lose both of his parents. While selling weapons in Afghanistan when his convoy is attacked and he is taken hostage to build his newest weapon, the Jericho missile, for a terrorist group known as the Ten Rings. After seeing what his weapons really do, he escapes and decides to live his new lease on life as someone who defends the country with his new armored suit.

Robert Downey, Jr. is brilliant. I hadn't seen him in too much but I knew that i loved him as an actor. When I saw that he would be doing Iron Man, I freaked out. Not only is he prefect for the role, he looks like Tony Stark. I had no problem whatsoever seeing him as Stark while watching it. He has said that he pulled his own life experiences into Stark's personality with this being the main reason that the director, Jon Favreau, hired him on. Jeff Bridges takes on an amazing role as Obadiah Stane with his large presence and commanding voice. Paltrow provides the perfect touch as Stark's assistant Pepper Potts. Potts adds the right amount of serious comedy to flair up Stark's odd personality.

The CGI is wonderful and makes me want his suit. Completely. The writing is very well done and gives Stark the perfect amount of arrogance mixed with self-reflection and character building that isn't over the top. He experiences the right amount of mental stress, deception, and loss that doesn't completely change who his is. This is evident most in Iron Man 2. He retains who he is while gaining a very specific goal that he works on. While a character like Batman has his whole life driven on the one turning point in his young life, Stark is already an adult. His personality is already created and etched into who he is. They acknowledge this and they happily retain his narcissistic arrogance.

This movie doesn't obtain a perfect status due to it's lack of impact. It is still just a superhero movie that deals with the main character's origin story. There is more to it, but fundamentally it is just that.

In the Avengers franchise, Iron Man would definitely be my favorite and if you haven't seen it yet, please do. This movie works very well as a stand alone movie or with the series but it definitely can be seen as more than just another superhero movie.

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