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Suit up for action with Robert Downey Jr. in the ultimate adventure movie youve been waiting for, Iron Man! When jet-setting genius-industrialist Tony Stark is captured in enemy territory, he builds a high-tech suit of armor to escape. Now, hes on a mission to save the world as a hero whos built, not born, to be unlike any other. Co-starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard and Jeff Bridges, its a fantastic, high-flying journey that is "hugely entertaining" (Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal).
You know you're going to get a different kind of superhero when you cast Robert Downey Jr. in the lead role. And Iron Man is different, in welcome ways. Cleverly updated from Marvel Comics' longstanding series, Iron Man puts billionaire industrialist Tony Stark (that's Downey) in the path of some Middle Eastern terrorists; in a brilliantly paced section, Stark invents an indestructible suit that allows him to escape. If the rest of the movie never quite hits that precise rhythm again, it nevertheless offers plenty of pleasure, as the renewed Stark swears off his past as a weapons manufacturer, develops his new Iron Man suit, and puzzles both his business partner (Jeff Bridges in great form) and executive assistant (Gwyneth Paltrow). Director Jon Favreau geeks out in fun ways with the hardware, but never lets it overpower the movie, and there's always a goofy one-liner or a slapstick pratfall around to break the tension. As for Downey, he doesn't get to jitterbug around too much in his improv way, but he brings enough of his unpredictable personality to keep the thing fresh. And listen up, hardcore Marvel mavens: even if you know the Stan Lee cameo is coming, you won't be able to guess it until it's on the screen. It all builds to a splendid final scene, with a concluding line delivery by Downey that just feels absolutely right. --Robert Horton
Stills from Iron Man (Click for larger image)
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Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) has got it all, riches and notoriety and an off-the-charts genius I.Q. A debonair gazillionaire who inherited Starks Industries, Stark has been content breezing thru his days as a freewheeling playboy/inventor. Swanky pad in Malibu. Fancy private jet with gorgeous stewardesses doubling as pole dancers. When asked to justify his company's role as the military's primary weapons provider, his flippant response is "Peace means having a bigger stick than the other guy."
But his worldview is forever altered when he goes to the Middle East for a weapons presentation. Terrorists blow up his vehicle, the resulting explosion causing shrapnel to be imbedded in his chest, very close to his heart. A makeshift electromagnetic device (hooked to a car battery) is implanted in his chest cavity, to prevent the shrapnel from piercing his heart. The terrorists, who hail Tony as the most famous mass murderer in America, insist that he build missiles for them. Accordingly, Tony is kept in a cave and given access to scrap metal and missile parts. But, Tony Stark, with nothing left to lose, decides to build something else...
This film is awesome, definitely a fan boy's giddy dream. IRON MAN brings the thunder, delivers the goods. There are so many highlight, pump-you-up moments here, to relish and hoot and holler for. The first appearance of the clunky Iron Man armor. The first time he takes flight. Tony's step-by-step (and often hilarious) development of the new, sleeker model. The first time the new model goes into action. And much, much more. Let me just say, eyeing schematics have never been so much fun. It's pretty contagious, the sheer fun and enjoyment experienced by Tony as he goes about putting together his armor. His underground lab is an eye-popping marvel of hi-tech gadgetry, which includes an artificial intelligence named Jarvis (in the comics, Jarvis is an all-too human butler of Tony's and the Avengers'). And when Iron Man finally truimphantly blazes thru the skies in ridiculous velocities - well, whew! No complaints at all, at all with how the Iron Man armors are imagined on screen. Prepare to get blown away.
IRON MAN is peopled by stock characters, no lie. The faithful, beautiful long-suffering, long-in-love assistant. The backstabbing business partner. The terrorists. Even the hero of the film isn't cut from a new cloth (uncaring industrialist undergoing a moral 180). But here's the thing: when these cliches are played by the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Bridges, and Robert Downey, Jr., well, then, the cardboard suddenly gains layers of depth.
Iron Man had always been so far down my list of favorite superheroes, it's kind of pathetic. Before this film, I've never found him that interesting in the comic books. Too cold, too smug, too superior, too powerful...Plus, if you've been following the recent Civil War crossover event in the Marvel comics, Iron Man, in my eyes, played a very distasteful role. But Iron Man on screen is something else. On celluloid, he's dynamic and dazzling and oh so friggin' cool! But the thing that really puts it all together, that which makes this flick such a hands down winner and a box office monster, is Robert Downey, Jr. Downey brings his fabulous acting, his jaded charisma and his comic wit and timing to the role. And to see him breathe life into Tony Stark is to think "Yes, of course!" - the man fits the part so seamlessly. Still handsome, but there's a well worn look to him now. Downey's done stuff and lived life outrageously, good and bad. And, really, that's Tony Stark to a T. Even more than Tobey Maguire is Spider-Man, Robert Downey, Jr. is Iron Man. For an actor who's had his ups and downs and for a brilliant formerly heartless ex-weaponeer who's literally had a change of heart, redemption comes in rip-roaring heavy metal...
THIS FILM ROCKS!!!.....
Sorry about that. I promised myself I would never do that. I can't seem to help myself. This might be the most excited I have ever been about a movie since seeing "Star Wars" nearly 32 years ago. Not even "Lord of the Rings" got me this stoked (and I love that series). I read an interview with Director, Jon Favreau in the Detroit Free Press. He described his initial meeting with ILM at their facilities. In a conference room full of ILM staff and notables he uttered these words; "I hate CGI". As you would guess they were quite stunned. It's because of this attitude that Favreau is quickly becoming my favorite Hollywood Director ( "Zathura" was also surprisingly good). His belief in using practical effects whenever possible is leading to more realistic and believable films than most of his peers. Of course, his desire to see really cool and smart movies (like most people) does not hurt. He really has faith in his audience and it pays off tremendously.
THIS FILM ROCKS!!
Pardon me!! MAN, 0 for 2! I'm being completely honest when I say this; by the time Stark invents his first "Iron" suit to break out of his prison, this had already become my favorite live action superhero movie. That was roughly half way through. The film could have ended there and I would have been completely satisfied. But wait, there is so much more. We spend the next 3rd of the film watching him transform technically and personally, and it is a joy. But wait, there is more. We get to laugh at his failures and impulsive behavior, and it is a joy. But wait, there is more. He starts to save the world, one person at a time and it is spectacular and... ...it is a joy. But wait!! Well, you get the picture. By the time the final climactic battle comes around, you might think it was unnecessary; however, it is a joy
THIS FILM ROCKS!!!
OK!! Now it's just getting annoying!! Despite the great visual FX and the outstanding action and nearly perfect story, it is the characters that make this film. I have never been a huge fan of any of the actors in this film. I thought they were ok but never was too wowed. Now, I am having a serious case of man-love for Robert Downey Jr.. I thought his casting as Tony Stark was a good idea before seeing the film. Now I'm convinced it was pure genius. Gwyneth Paltrow's secondary role as Pepper Potts (assistant savant) actually stood out. She brought a huge amount of depth and realism to a fringe character; impressive. The rest of the characters/actors were equally believable and performed above my expectations. Again, I think this speaks of masterful direction.
THIS FILM RO....
That's enough!! This is the first solo film production from Marvel Entertainment. HUGE KUDOS!! They obviously know their core product much better than the Hollywood regulars. They recently announced their plans through 2011. In the next few years we will get to see a new and hopefully better Hulk, Captain America, Mighty Thor, more Iron Man and Nick Fury; Agent of SHEILD. All of these films will be connected in some way and seem to be pointing at a culmination in an "Avengers" film. If Marvel keep their focus and stick to what worked so brilliantly in "Iron Man" we are all in for a real treat!!
A WORD TO PARENTS
There is one sex scene in this film. It's a bit rough (physically speaking). Though no real nudity occurs it might be more than you'd like your kids to see. Some of the violence could be too intense for younger or sensitive kids
Did I mention that THIS FILM ROCKS!?!?!? Just checking.