Saturday, May 11, 2013

Iron Man 3

Unless you've been living under a rock, you already know if you should go to this movie.  If you saw the trailer and went, "Cool, I gotta go," then, yes, you gotta go.  If, on the other hand, the trailer left you cold and wondering when someone will finally make a great film from a John Cheever novel, then skip it and keep waiting for that day that will never come.

So, I won't try to help you decide.  Instead, I'll give you my thoughts on the movie. 

Warning:  spoilers ahead.

Overall, I enjoyed it quite a bit and will see it again at some point.  For timing reasons, I had to watch it in 3D, which is rarely my first choice, so next time, I'll try to catch a standard version. 

That said, two major things about it bothered me, so I didn't love it.

First, the good stuff.  The opening act, in which Robert Downey, Jr. angsts and angsts and angsts, is nowhere near as bad as most critics have it being.  It didn't bother me at all.  He's a good enough actor, and I'm enough into the character (from a life of reading the comics), that I found this part more than entertaining enough. 

The rest of the main actors turned in either strong or fun performances. Guy Pearce chewed the scenery in huge, drooling bites, and I'm fine with that. Gywneth Paltrow once again managed to be interesting and even attractive, attributes she has managed to achieve, as far as I'm concerned, only in the Iron Man films.  I will watch Don Cheadle act in anything.

And then there's Ben Kingsley.  That man can flat out act.  In this case, the role called for him to play two very different characters, both of whom needed to chow down on some scripts, and he did so with apparent glee.  As the actor playing the Mandarin, he was such silly fun to watch that I hope for more of him in an extended cut.  

That turn of plot was a very nice touch indeed, by the way, and because I'd avoided any spoilers prior to seeing the film, it was news to me. 

The action sequences, even when they made little sense, were great fun.

The first thing that kept me from loving this movie was the complete lack of rules for the powers of the bad guys.  I didn't miss the line about needing to regulate to stop from exploding in a three-thousand-degree ball of heat, but that wasn't enough to excuse the way Pearce's powers--and Paltrow's--grew and mutated at the end.

The other upsetting factor was the separation of Tony Stark from Iron Man.  The big battle was more Jarvis in multiple suits fighting the enemy than Iron Man facing down a foe.  Worse, the separation of his chest power source from the suits, and the eventual removal of that power source, damaged the man/Iron Man link.  If they make any more Iron Man movies, and I'm not at all sure if they will, I'll be curious to see how they handle this.

Still, as I said, I enjoyed the film and will see it again. 


Anonymous said...

Agree with you - worth seeing a couple more times, but one is doing a lot of suspending one's unbelief regarding the bad guys' powers. Instinctively, I kept longing for Highlander to come in and "take their heads" - why didn't our heroes think of that? - seems like the easiest solution. I need to see the film again to be sure they actually removed the electromagnet from Stark's chest - all I really remember was the schrapnel being removed. Another thing left hanging was whether Pepper still has the superpowers (regulated), or whether he found a way to actually remove the changes to her DNA. My friends seem to assume the latter, but I didn't think it was that clear cut.
(P.S. - Welcome back from your trip!)
-old aggie

Mark said...

Yeah, I did like some of the stuff the film left open.

Thanks for the welcome!

Michael said...

My biggest complaint of the movie was also the removal of the ARC. It just seemed like it was glossed over too. They made it seem like all he needed to do to remove it was to stop and concentrate on a way to do it. If that were the case, wouldn't he have done that in IM2 when it was killing him?

In the comics, Tony modified Extremis and used it on himself. It kind of made him like Jon. He gained a limited healing factor, and could remotely interface with machines, which allowed him remote control of his armors. Why they avoided doing that in the movie when it would have explained away the problems with the movie I don't know.

Also, Extremis in the comics was unstable, and therefore produced inconsistent powers in people. It wasn't explained very well in the movie though.

Overall I think it wasn't as good as the first Iron Man, but with a few tweeks, and maybe 5-10 extra minutes it could have been far better.

Mark said...

Good points re Extremis.


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