I love Iron Man. There, I said it. I read the comics when I was younger. I love Iron Man 1 and 2. Robert Downey Jr is without doubt the best person I could imagine playing Tony Stark. The first two movies were full of great acting, had good scripts, characterization and were free of the stupidity seen so often in recent blockbusters. Some reasonably decent plotting and good characters you can actual believe are real make the difference between a ho-hum movie and a good one.
Alas, three times is not the charm.
I wanted to like Iron Man 3, I really did. Hell, they were bringing in the Mandarin – Tony’s arch-enemy. We had the Iron Patriot (okay, maybe not so good), more Tony-tech, more rational-based characters, Tony was trying to deal with his booze problem…
Oh wait, the booze problem evaporated. What the hell? Oh shit, please… no… arrrrghhhh!
Yes folks, this is the Marvel Universe now owned by Disney Corp. Quick, get rid of the booze. Let’s not have people acting like adults. Get rid of the plot that makes sense but has a few edges to it… and for god’s sakes someone throw a bloody kid in there somewhere!
Seriously, 1 and 2 had no young characters. Okay there was the kid that Tony saved from being blasted, but I mean none that actually spoke, let alone took up half the damn film like in 3. And what was the actual purpose of this kid? What did the character bring to the story? Nothing. If you simply deleted every kid scene the movie would work just as well – actually better.
Tony’s mansion is destroyed along with all his suits except an old battered one that needs some serious rebuilding but he’s got no facilities. Gasp! Don’t worry this is Tony, he could build a suit out of a box of scraps. In a cave. With the help of a kid…
And the nasty old Mandarin? That mysterious, powerful character that battled Iron Man to virtual defeat on so many occasions? Yeah. he’s like this out of work British actor called Trevor… Sorry, maybe I confused you there. The character of Mandarin isn’t being played by Trevor – the character IS Trevor playing the Mandarin. No, that’s not a joke, except in a bad sense. The Mandarin character has been completely emasculated; all prior art or history of the character thrown out of the door by a selfish director who, like so many, believes it’s okay to trash what’s gone before to bolster their own ego.
At the end of the movie. Tony reactivates all his suits which weren’t (miraculously) destroyed, just in time for us to have a huge CGI fest where he’s jumping in and out of suits quicker than (pre-Pepper) Tony jumped in and out of women’s’ beds. So why the hell did he spend so much time trying to fix the broken suit? In a cave. From a box of scraps. With a kid…
There are some good lines for sure. The cast is as good as usual (except Guy Pierce who’s just his usual oiliness). It’s polished and has some great CGI (yawn) it just has no soul. Here’s an example shown in the trailer’s where Disney steps in:
The President’s plane has exploded and he and his staff have been sucked out into the air. Iron Man is rocketing down to save them as they fall.
Iron Man/Tony: How many in the air?
JARVIS: Thirteen, Sir!
Iron Man/Tony: How many can I carry?
JARVIS: Four, Sir.
This should set up some real tension. Who will Tony save? Who’s going to die.? A knife-edge dilemma that previously would have had a bad ending for at least some of those falling. BANG! WHOA. Disney mode activated. With some teamwork and a bit of faith from everyone Tony can save them all. Whoooeee! errr.. barf… It’s pathetic. I kept expecting Lassie to show up in a suit of armor…
Let’s not even bother talking about “Extremis”. Glowing humans who become burning hot semi-liquid metal? But some of them explode. Reason? How does this even work? How can Tony just cool down Pepper after she’s turned into one? Bahhh! Who cares… we can do some really neat CGI with this…
I hope they make more Iron Men movies. I hope they have the sense to keep Robert Downey (and the other main characters). I hope next time they give us a decent story and don’t destroy any other main characters from Iron Man lore.
Oh and please, PLEASE- Leave the kid. In a cave. With a bunch of scraps…