This review contains SPOILERS!
As I sat in my seat anxiously waiting for the third installment of the Iron Man film franchise to begin, I couldn’t help but think of several other third installments that have come before, and failed miserably (Need I mention Spider-Man 3? Back to the Future 3, and BTTF 2 for the matter? Batman Forever?) You get the picture! Too often has Hollywood rushed to produce a third chapter which turns out to be just that…rushed, not well-thought out, and filled with bad humor and extra-cheesy one liners that make you wish you could get your (or your girlfriend’s) money back. If you haven’t seen Iron Man 3, then, by all means, take out your wallet and get to the theater because Marvel’s latest flick featuring golden boy Tony Stark is pretty good. Not great, but pretty good.
First off, I thought it was a great idea to have Tony Stark having anxiety attacks as he struggled to deal with life after the Avengers fight with the aliens from outer space. I loved the fact that the writers chose not to ignore that important event in Stark’s life, even though it took place in another film. That gave the film a true comic book cross-over feel…there’s also a quick reference to Thor in the movie as well as a cameo appearance in the post-closing credits scene by Mark Ruffalo. The action in this film was top notch. Downey Jr. gets to strut his stuff in and out of the suit, which was great to see. My big complaint with Iron Man 2 was that there was too much Stark and not enough Iron Man. Well, someone must have heard my cries because this film had a nice balance of both. Even better, we were treated to an Iron Man armor extravaganza in the final action sequence when Stark summoned all of his different combat designs (via Jarvis) to come to his aid. Nice touch.
Ben Kingsley as the Mandarin…superb!!! I knew already that Kingsley was a great actor, but his rendition of the Mandarin was truly ominous…then, just when you think you ‘ve got him figured out…the writers drop an unexpected twist (which is a departure from the comic book storyline) that is so well executed and plausible, that you can’t help but accept it and go along for the ride (That’s right, I decided to withhold the details and not SPOIL that one for you).
Don Cheadle returns as Rhodey and gets in a small amount of play as the Iron Patriot (it’s a stupid name, they even acknowledge that fact in the movie). Paltrow reprises her role as Pepper Potts, rounding out the cast. Over all, I was very pleased with the film, and I ‘m certain that I will see it again. Iron Man 3 gets a 2.5 out 4 stars, and only because I have an issue or two. First, and this is a biggie, I had an issue with the super-enhanced version of Pepper Potts. Okay, she gets pumped up and can survive a fall that would surely kill most people, but to have her emerge with enough fighting skills (any fighting skills) to hold her own…like, on the spot…uh, not buying that. Also, I have a small issue with kids being tossed into movies or TV shows in order to “up” the cute factor. IM3 did it…luckily, the rest of the film made up for it. Next up is “Star Trek Into Darkness”, due out May 17. That’s all for now. Feel free to comment. Until next time…