Marvel Studios' Iron Man 2

6.92 h 4 min2010X-RayHDRUHDPG-13
Tony Stark has declared himself Iron Man and installed world peace... or so he thinks. He soon realizes that not only is there a mad man out to kill him with his own technology, but there's something more, he is dying.
Jon Favreau
Robert Downey Jr.Gwyneth PaltrowDon Cheadle
Science FictionAdventureAction
English [CC]
Audio languages
EnglishEnglish [Audio Description]
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4.7 out of 5 stars

12683 global ratings

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A. BurroughsReviewed in the United States on July 12, 2010
4.0 out of 5 stars
Not Iron Man I ... but still fantastic!!!
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Although Iron Man 2 didn't quite get up to the bar set by Iron Man I, I feel it was worth the price of theater tickets to see on the big screen and well worth investing in the DVD when it's finally released (this from somebody way too cheap to pay for theater tickets or cough up for most DVD's when we can borrow them free from our library).

The chemistry between Stark and Potts was as good if not better than before. Potts character as an extremely classy, competent and pragmatic woman is built upon nicely and a positive role model for our daughters without needing to transform into a superhero herself. Her grace and the chemistry between her and Stark (including his clumsy attempts to woo her) is the surprising reason so many -women- have been attracted to this movie. No spoilers here, but towards the end you'll be like "it's about time!!!"

Ivan Vanko was credible as the villian ... he's evil and you're glad to see him defeated, but you understand where he is coming from. You'll feel sad at the end as though a beautiful but viscous dog is put down because he can't be rehabilitated. I wish they'd emphasized a tiny bit more the process by which Vanko builds his competing "suit" and his relationship with his pet bird as sci-fi fans like the technical stuff while women enjoy relationships that help them understand people. It helps if you understand Russian when Vanko speaks (though Rourkes' Russian isn't that good) because some of the comments Vanko mutters under his breath in Russian that the movie never bothers to translate are actually quite funny (such as when he mutters "sleeshcum mnoga gavariche" to Hammer which loosely translates into "you talk too much.")

Some people have complained about the director writing himself into the script. I didn't mind and loved when Black Widow slammed him to the floor in the boxer ring scene and also towards the end when Hogan's so pleased with himself for having defeated one security guard and then he looks around to see Black Widow has defeated a dozen more.

Black Widow was great ... another strong and classy woman to inspire my daughters. Her exposure was just about right in this movie, but I hope they highlight her character (and her kick-butt martial arts skills) quite a bit more in the upcoming Avengers.

Don Cheadle was okay as Warmonger. I liked Terrence Howard in IM1 and felt they wrote him out of the script too much when viewing the deleted scenes (to the point many things didn't make sense until viewing the deletions), so I was glad to see Cheadle fill in the details of the relationship between Stark and Rhodey in IM2. However, since Cheadle is such a great actor, I was disappointed to see him take such a pronounced "best buddy sidekick" role. Cheadle needs to be stronger as a superhero in his own right in Avengers and IM3.

The Hammer character just didn't work for me ... at all. I like him as a stand-up comic, but one or two comic interjections into the characters weaseliness would have been plenty. One slightly-warped-has-a-sense-of-humour weapons manufacturing billionaire industrialist is plenty ... two is one too many. The wasted time spent injecting humour into his character would have been much better spent on Stark spending time improving the suit or solving his power problem.

As for Iron Man himself, he was great, but the producers focused too much on drunken incidents of Starks self-destructive behavior when he thinks he's dying and not enough on the tech-building aspect of Stark trying to solve his own problem. Watching Robert Downey Jr. go through this same self-destructive process in real life was quite enough, thank you very much, and a good 20 minutes of IM2's drunken antics would have been better spent on other issues. Like Downey in real life, the viewers want to see Stark move beyond his problems and become emotionally strong and self-disciplined like the actor who portrays him. Watching Stark build and test the suit in IM1 (both gorgeous -and- brilliant) is what attracted many viewers to the first movie ... I feel they downplayed the tech too much (like where did the suitcase suit come from?) in IM2. Stark in IM1 is "everyman," the inspiration for intelligent people everywhere to simply -choose- to use your intellect to create a solution for unsolveable problems and, in the process, make yourself a better person. Stark is a man who, quite literally, is dying from a broken heart but still has enough heart left to choose to make the world a better place. The Marvel Iron Man/Stark character has always been about the humanity of the man inside the suit, not just the suit itself, some of which was lost in IM2 in their attempt to throw too many characters and sub-plots into the mix.

The whole get-drunk-at-the-party-destroy-the-house-fight-with-Rhody scene should have been completely deleted and that time devoted to more comic build-it-test-it-have-a-mishap-then-solve-it scenes like was done in the first movie. Stark also had more "emotional" moments in IM1 (such as fear when he first sees the electromagnet in his chest or getting choked up when he tells Pepper he knows what he's doing is the right thing to do) which were totally missing in IM2 (like ... the dude is dying ... where's the emotion!!!) One or two of the "drunk" scenes would have been better spent having Stark come to grips with his relationship with his genius dead father.

Another distasteful element ... the directors attempts to tie Stark to Howard Hughs by adopting his dislike of germs or people touching him is barking up the wrong tree. We want a strong Iron Man, not a neurotic one. Ditch the Hughs defect analogies and play up the similarities to of Howard Hughs strengths instead!!! Nobody wants to think of Iron Man/Stark ending up in a Vegas hotel room surrounded by cups of his own urine like Hughs!!!

I sure hope Downey does a Russell Crowe and decides to "keep the body" when he does Sherlock Holmes 2 this time around!!! It's none-too-hard on the female eyes watching Downey flex those gorgeous iron-hammering arms, six-pack abs and chest muscles (okay ... female leering here ... probably not relevant to a movie review).

Some action-hero buffs have complained about too much underlying "talk" and not enough action. I don't think it was simply lack of action that lost this movie it's 5th star, but rather the fact it dragged too long between the first few action scenes than we had to wait to have them all lumped up at the end. Not all movie viewers are 14-years old ... we like drama and a well defined thread underlying the action ... but IM2 just didn't do as good of a job as tying together the action and sub-scripts as IM1. Too many "chiefs" (actors and sub-plots) and not enough "firemen" (testing the suit) to do the work in this movie. I hope they clean things up for Avengers and IM3.

In summary ... not as good as IM1, but still worth buying the DVD and watching it a million times even if you're cheap like me.
2 people found this helpful
H. BalaReviewed in the United States on May 8, 2010
4.0 out of 5 stars
"Sir, I'm gonna have to ask you to exit the doughnut?"
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There's nothing like that first kiss, yeah, and so even though IRON MAN 2 comes out and unleashes its share of awesomeness, even though it is very much worth a look, the mystery is gone, the expectations met, we've, er, already copped that feel. IRON MAN 2, good as it is, doesn't drop on us like lightning in a bottle, and so it isn't quite as exhilarating. What it does give us is more of that good Robert Downey, Jr.

The guy has made the Invincible Iron Man into his own, and I can't see anyone else now as Tony Stark, and I'm betting you can't, either. Downey brings the same devilish, bigger-than-life charisma, that same brash "I'm Tony Stark! Who the eff are you?!" swagger. Tony Stark is brilliant and ego-centric, but he's got good intentions. His heart's in the right place, and so we forgive the rampant narcissism. Plus, he's a fun dude to be around.

IRON MAN 2 chronicles Tony's fall from grace and his redemption. Six months ago Tony Stark told the world that he was Iron Man. But has fame and success gone to his head? He's been more eccentric lately, indulging even more in hedonism lately, and he's conducting the Stark Expo like it's a rock concert (which is actually bloody cool). Certain parties are worried. Iron Man's arrival had gone a ways into ensuring global peace or at least global detente. But six months later, the American government - as embodied in the person of the slimy Senator Stern (Garry Shandling) - is itching to get its paws on the Iron Man tech and, so, Tony has to attend senate hearings. Stark, in his own inimitable manner, blows the hearings out of the water.

There's a fatal flaw in the schematics, a gremlin in the wires. Carefree on the outside, on the inside Tony is very concerned. The palladium element in the arc reactor in his chest is gradually poisoning him, and each use of the Iron Man armor accelerates the condition. But he keeps up the pretense, having informed no one of his impending death. Maybe you can't blame the guy for carrying on so.

I actually expected this movie to delve into Tony's alcoholism (from the classic story arc in the comics), but we only get a peek at the man's fondness for booze. We do get moments when we see the flamboyant playboy take a sippy, as well as one epic drunken binge at a party (while in armor, no less). This public eff-up sends Tony's credibility plummeting, and that slimy senator's smirk just got even smirkier.

Rival industrialist Justin Hammer isn't the Big Bad of the movie, but Sam Rockwell supplies him with a pronounced air of unctuousness, and you hate him. Hammer, fed up with languishing in Stark's shadow, hires a crazed and tattooed Russian physicist to craft his own arsenal of armored suits, and a Russian physicist played by the menacing Mickey Rourke probably would have no choice but to be crazed and tattooed. They don't call Rourke's character by his supervillain code name, but it's Whiplash (with a smidge of Crimson Dynamo thrown in). He nurses a serious grudge against Tony and Tony's father, Howard Stark, who had a falling out with Whiplash's own inventor father. But how does Rourke get away with chewing a toothpick all the time?

IRON MAN 2 isn't magic like the first movie and that initial sense of novelty has worn off, but it's still terrific and the scale is bigger. Downey's presence drives the thing, and the fact that we don't mind that Tony Stark is onscreen more than Iron Man says something about the skills set Downey brings to the party. We still get that good banter between him and Gwyneth Paltrow. Don Cheadle takes over from Terrence Howard, and it's like he's always been on board as Rhodey. The f/x is flawless state of the art stuff; there's nothing like heavy metal clashing resoundingly. If you've at all seen the posters and the trailer, then you already know War Machine would make his debut, and he may not be as impressive as the ol' shellhead but, damn, he's got all those big mounted guns. And, for dessert, curvy Scarlett Johansson steps into the franchise as the smoking hot Black Widow and she demonstrates high levels of kickassery. And oh that sexy black leather....

I only wish Pepper Potts were given more stuff to do.

Jon Favreau features himself more as Happy Hogan, a chauffer in this incarnation, and I'm not mad at Favreau. What's the point of being director if you can't call your own number once in a while? Meanwhile, IRON MAN 2, in a scene here and there, gets us another step closer to that Avengers movie. Somewhere, executives from DC Comics must be gnashing their teeth, late to the game, lagging behind. The Green Lantern movie had better be something.

And, as become a habit with Marvel Studios flicks, stick around until after the closing credits, yeah? Nerd nirvana awaits.
9 people found this helpful
Courtney Wilkerson (Court Appointed)Reviewed in the United States on May 11, 2010
4.0 out of 5 stars
Iron Man 2
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Taking place six months after the first Iron Man, Iron Man 2 finds a world where Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) has successfully "privatized world peace," but fearing other countries getting their hands on Stark's Iron Man technology the Senate seeks to have Tony hand over the technology to the government. Also seeking to steal Stark's technology is Justin Hammer (Sam Rockwell) who wants to regain a weapons contract with the military. Complicating things further, a mysterious Russian physicist named Ivan Vanko (Mickey Rourke) turns up to destroy Tony Stark.

Iron Man was a huge surprise when it came out in the early summer of 2008. A 2nd tier Marvel comic book, Iron Man became one of the top grossing movies of 2008, and even held it's own very well against the juggernaut that was The Dark Knight despite it's much smaller fanbase. It also resurrected Robert Downey Jr.'s career, showing that he was capable of leading a franchise despite his past mistakes, and showed that Jon Favreau was a viable action director. Since then Downey has found himself nominated for two Golden Globes winning one of them, and added yet another big action franchise to the current notch in his belt. Of course, all eyes are on Iron Man 2 to see if the movie will top it's predecessor in the expectations department, so how does it hold up.

In my opinion, Iron Man 2 equals it's predecessor. The second installment of Iron Man is funnier than the original, and it ups the ante on the action from the first movie as well. What really makes the movie though, is not the action, but the characterizations. Fleshing out Stark's narcissism as well as his inabilities to deal with his emotions opens new doors into the character. Favreau and new writer to the series Justin Theroux (Tropic Thunderdo a great job of handling a large cast that would normally sink most other comic book franchises.

The casting in this movie is superb even if it seems jarring to see so many actors and actresses playing characters that aren't typical for them. Apart from The Spirit and The Island, Scarlett Johansson hasn't played an outright action fueled character, but she equips herself admirably to play the part of a believable martial arts trained heroine. Don Cheadle does a great job taking over the role of Rhodey from Terrence Howard, and even tops his predecessor. Sam Rockwell does a superb job as Stark's rival, and a man who tries his hardest to be as iconic as Tony Stark, but fails miserably on all counts. Mickey Rourke steals nearly every scene he's in, though, as Russian physicist Ivan Vanko. I was never sure if I would be able to buy him as a Russian, but the work he put into researching for the character definitely paid off.

On the downside though, sometimes it feels as though there's too much of a rush to get from one point to the next. Scenes feel as though they move to the next before they're truly done playing out. Unfortunately, this is one of the issues of having such a large cast that needs to have proper screen time to flesh out the characters. To add to that, the second half of the film is a bit derivative of other action films. While the film may do a great job of going in a different direction than other comic book films by outing it's central character and performing a character study on a man who thrives on his popularity in that position, but in the last act of the movie it falls into the same trap as other action movies with an ending that can be cliché.

All in all, I highly recommend this movie, especially if you like movies based on comic books and if you like the first Iron Man. Franchises like Iron Man, the current Batman series, and Kick-Ass set a new benchmark for comic book movies and action movies in general. With great action, acting, characterization, and originality these movies have moved beyond their genres to capture something that extends beyond it's core audience.

3 people found this helpful
shatteredheartReviewed in the United States on September 22, 2022
5.0 out of 5 stars
Another great movie for Marvel.
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If you are a Marvel fan, you have to have this movie in your collection. Another all-around great job by actors, directors, producers. etc. No let-downs in this one.
One person found this helpful
Critic's CornerReviewed in the United States on May 16, 2010
4.0 out of 5 stars
Men of Iron, Women of Steel -- The Tony Stark Story!
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Unlike other superhero films, with shoot 'em up action, crazed villains and a conflicted hero who is put into life threatening situations for himself and those he loves, director Favreau decided on a different take.

Favreau went on an Iron-Deficient diet! And instead created a story about Tony the man. Tony the billionaire, arrogant playboy. Tony, the man who is dying.

The Paramount logo barely glows on the big screen when we hear the audio of the Senate hearings by a smarmy senator who demands the Iron suit "weapon" for the USA. Tony wants it for himself and congratulates himself on "privatizing World Peace" *kiss kiss*

However, the metal he is using for the energy core that is keeping him alive as well as powering the Iron suit is killing him. CGI veins darken his neck. But in a fit of wanting to protect those he loves by pushing them away, he gives away his art gallery, gives his CEO post to Pepper Potts and decides to party his life away.

The world however ,was not meant to give Stark a relaxing good time.

The other side of the world has a Russian physicist whose father worked for and later apparently discarded by Tony's father. This man, Ivan, wants revenge. Collaborating with a government stooge (Justin Hammer, a real idiot) he invents Iron-man clones which as we will later see will be used to bring down Stark Industries (known colloquially as "Hammer-oids"). Hey, I could NOT make this stuff up, OK??

I disagree with critics who feel it's another Spider-man 3 [[[ASIN:B00005JPFH Spider-Man 3 (Two-Disc Special Edition)]]] with a bunch of villains and mixing it up. Far from it.

The "women of steel" include Black Widow, working under cover for SHIELD as Tony's legal adviser (and man she is fine) and a great martial artist. Love the fight scenes! The other "woman of steel" is Pepper Potts, who is at her wits end about what to do about and with Tony. She loves him but she can't stand him. Whadda predicaminckt!

The real player is Tony's dad. We watch a film that would have done Disney proud as the "Key to the Future" is revealed (complete with Disney-esque music and style) but is actually more than it seems -- and gives Tony a key to his future.

The relationship angle was a welcome change for the superhero film. It's mostly story and plot and interaction between characters. Yes, there are explosions and broken glass and flying bullets and guns -- but these are secondary -- even the villain is secondary -- to the man and the myth that is Stark.

I was impressed!

Minus one star for the slow pace. I found that it went on a little too long, with Tony getting drunk, smashing up his own birthday party and so on. The Shield connection and Black Widow's part could have been expanded in lieu of the silly party antics.

Don't forget to stay to the end of the credits! There's a cool chestnut for you Marvel Comics fans!

Bottom Line: Character driven, real story and substance into the man that is Tony Stark, as he finds his body betraying him, as he is slowly dying and does not have a lot of options. People who don't normally go in for these types of comic book-based films will enjoy this picture as a result of this new, original style by Favreau.


[[ASIN:B00005JPS8 Iron Man (Two-Disc Special Collectors' Edition)]]
[[ASIN:B00194IFQ2 Iron Man Viva Las Vegas # 1 (of 4) comic]]
4 people found this helpful
Judy McMillanReviewed in the United States on October 12, 2022
5.0 out of 5 stars
The Best Ironman movie Ever, also the Beat Marvel movie
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Love it
One person found this helpful
joel wingReviewed in the United States on May 14, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Tony Stark has to deal with father's legacy and price of fame
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In Iron Man 2 Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr) has to deal with not only the legacy of his father but the price of fame. Stark’s father Howard Stark (John Slattery) was a billionaire, genius, inventor and one of the founders of SHIELD. Tony always saw him as aloof and not really caring. When he learns out that his dad actually loved him that unlocks a secret that will allow Tony to live. At the same time he has to deal with Ivan Vanko (Mickey Rourke) whose father was discredited and deported back to the Soviet Union by the senior Stark. When he sees Tony on TV bragging that he’s Iron Man it reminds him of his dad being ruined by Howard Stark. He wants revenge and cooperates with Stark’s rival Justin Hammer (Sam Rockwell) to achieve his goal.

As a subplot there are members of the government who want the Iron Man to be under government control. Stark is opposed to such a plan, but when he faces his own mortality he allows his friend Colonel James Rhodey (Don Cheadle) take one of his suits which is converted into War Machine.

Jon Favreau returned as director who was hugely responsible for making the original Iron Man such a success. Downey really embodied the Stark character. It’s hard to think of another actor who could have fit so well into the role. They both contributed to the light mood. While not as ground breaking as the first Iron Man, the sequel was still a great addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
2 people found this helpful
bek77Reviewed in the United States on October 26, 2010
4.0 out of 5 stars
Great sequel despite lack of fight scenes
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Ironman 2 is a great sequel to the original 2008 film. Rarely do sequel's equal or even come close to being as successful as their predecesor, but in this case Ironman 2 lived up to the hype. The introduction of new characters was well done, too. The sequel is basically set around the idea that Tony Stark's Ironman suit is slowly killing him due to the elements that comprise it. Robert Downey Jr's character, Tony Stark is in a fight against time to try and find a replacement element, which initially doesn't exist. The backdrop to this is that Mickey Rourke's character, Ivan Vanko, a Russian physicist has developed his own suit of destruction. The goverment is also after Tony wanting him to hand over the Ironman suit. Gary Shandling plays Sen. Stern who is leading the investigation into trying to claim the suit.
I haven't see Gary Shandling in a movie or on TV in a very long time, and I can say I didn't miss him. The guy has spent too much time and money on botox or some other facial surgery because he actually looks plastic. Very scary, his face alone could have been a villian.
It was nice seeing John Favreau gave Gwyneth Paltrow's characer, Pepper Potts a lot more freedom in this film as well. Her character is given the keys to the Stark Industries kingdom by Tony himself, temporarily of course. It was also nice to see the director in more scenes that involved dialogue, John Favreau was a great actor before becoming a great director. Other actors who include Don Cheadle, Sam Rockwell and Samual Jackson round out this great cast of quality actors.
I enjoyed seeing Scarlett Johansson in a tight body suit as the very hot, and very sexy spy, Black Widow aka, Natalie Rushman. She is a great actress and really brought a lot to the movie, besides playing a spy who works for Samual Jackson's character, Nick Fury, she handled the action/fight scenes with ease. I'm sure the lovely Scarlett spent many hours at a gym working on kung fu/karate moves for the part.
The only real gripe I had were two separate issues. The first being the lack of fight scenes with Rourke's character. Robert Donwey Jr. and Mickey Rourke only share the screen for a small amount of time. The race car scene with Tony was good, as he was inroduced to Vank's character, their fight is brief, but some what exciting. At the end of the movie, Ironman and War Machine are in a fight with Vanko. There is a lot of down time in between, in which I felt more fight scenes could have been possible. Speaking of War Machine, Cheadle's character was excellent, there was no drop off with the absense of Terrence Howard, as Don Cheadle himself is a great actor.
The other issue I had was the prolonged and somewhat unnecessary fight scene between Ironman and War Machine at Tony's casa. A scene which escalated out of conrol over Cheadle's insistance that Downey's Ironaman suit needs to be turned over to the goverment. I don't mind a good fight, even at the expense of some damage, but this was totally over board. It got kind of stupid quick.
Overall, I would highly recommend the movie. The film ends well too, there were two possible scenarios that Marvel can go with character development after this 2nd installment of Ironman. I think a 3rd Ironman is very possible, I think Marvel needs to act on it quick as Downey isn't getting any younger. Both my kids loved this movie, as did my wife and I. On a scale of 1-10, I would give this movie a solid 9.
Hope this review helps.
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