Movie Review: Iron Man 3!
Iron Man 3 (2013)
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Sir Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle, Guy Pearce
Directed by: Shane Black
Any film being released after The Avengerswas going to face an uphill battle. Luckily for us, Tony Stark has never been one to worry about following anyone’s act. Finally facing off with his main villain The Mandarin, Iron Man 3 is not only the first film after Earth’s Mightiest Heroes took over the box office, but also the start of Marvel Studio’s “phase two” films. So, as the start of the next block of films that will include Captain America: The Winter Solider, Thor: The Dark World, and Guardians Of The Galaxy, does Iron Man 3 start strong out of the gate, or are we in for a rocky road to Avengers 2?
Well, I can say this: it’s great, even with the weird plot twist that has already divided Iron Man fans right down the middle.
Taking place after the events of The Avengers, Tony Stark’s (Robert Downey Jr.) latest adventure finds him still coming to terms from the events of the New York City attack that brought the team together. He can’t sleep; instead doing everything he can to keep himself busy. When he starts having panic attacks, his closest allies, including now girlfriend Pepper Pots (Gwyneth Paltrow) and James Rhodes (Don Cheadle), start to take notice of his moods and worry about him. Not only that, but he also has to deal with Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) moving in on Stark Industries with his controversial Extremis project, a biological computer component that amps up disabled and injured citizens, but with a side effect that causes them to become insanely powerful cyborg hybrids. But, when a terrorist named The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) starts attacking points in the United States, Tony has to take notice, especially when Happy Hogan (Jon Farvreau) is caught in the blast.
Iron Man 3 crams a lot of plot into its reels, and at two and a half hours it definitely strains, especially in the middle act of the film. However, there’s more action in this film than in the previous two solo Stark adventures. There’s plenty of things to keep viewers interested, but there’s that twist I mentioned that I have…. mixed feelings about.
It’s hard to explain it here, especially with this being relatively spoiler free, but its a divisive twist that I’m sure you’ve probably heard some sort of news about it. Even if you don’t know the specifics of it, you probably know who or what it revolves around. I myself found it to be pretty disappointing at first, but then pretty hilarious as it went on. I should’ve probably prefaced this with the fact that I’m a casual Iron Man fan and only really started regularly reading him after the first movie, so my opinion on this particular twist will most definitely differ from a die hard shell head fan.
Outside of the twist, I found the rest of the film to be very enjoyable. Director Shane Black, who previously helmed Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang, does an excellent job balancing the humor and action one expects from an Iron Man film, though there are times where it seems like the film goes too far into the broad comedy area.
However, all things are washed away in the action packed finale, which more than makes up for the lack of concluding action in the previous Iron Man films. I myself found this third installment of the Tony Stark saga to be better than Iron Man 2, but not as good as the first time we met Tony Stark. Still, at this point, if you’ve seen everything other Marvel Studio film, you’re going to see this one too. As long as you’re not too beholden to some aspects of the Iron Man character, you’ll have a good time.
Four and half repulsor blasts out of Five
It seems like it should be a well-known fact at this point, but there’s an after credits stinger that I found to be a lot of fun. So, even if you’re ready to bolt or the large soda you chugged halfway through the movie is hitting you, make sure you stick it out. It’s well worth it.