|Directed by:||Jon Favreau|
|Written by:||Arthur Marcum, Matthew Hollaway|
|Cast:||Robert Downey Jr., Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges, Gwyneth Paltrow|
The kickstart to the Summer Movies Season gets a serviceable enough presentation with Iron Man. It's been hyped so much this last year that it would be nearly impossible to live up to its' expectations.
Robert Downey Jr. was great as Mr. Stark, mastering his sarcastic line delivery to provide a series of small chuckles. Even better is his addiction to alcohol making itself apparent throughout the mvoie. This movie actually follows the comic series fairly closely, and works to the movie's benefit. I'm not a particular fan of Iron Man myself, and so my heart isn't as closely connected to this movie's success or failure on any level. I basically wanted to have a good time, and enjoy the CGI effects more than the blurry mess that came from Transformers.
Most of the time, the CGI was passable. There is an elaborate fight sequence on a freeway between Iron Man and Iron Monger which started to look too much like something straight from Transformers. It wasn't just the idea of big robots battling it out in a city, but also there was too much flinging around in a big blur half the time. Outside of this, you could tell that the effects were mostly created by a team of PC animators, but it worked well enough to not upset me all that much. This probably means that most others won't have as many complaints as I do with the special effects.
It's funny how many times I kept thinking of Robocop. When he busts out of Afghanistan, his flame-throwing frenzy had allusions to Robocop's invasion on the cocaine warehouse. Dudes are shooting at him left and right, with bullets bouncing off of him from every direction. Also, when Iron Man starts "breaking down" due to extensive abuse, it made me think of poor Murphy being taken down by the ED-209. Last but not least, I thought of Robocop 2 at the end when Iron Mand jumps on Iron Monger's back and starts tearing shit up. Much like Murphy jumping on the new Robo-series' back.
Paltrow's Pepper is mostly the coffee-chasing bitch, and everyone knows she's got a soft spot for Stark. It's too bad that her purpose in the movie didn't seem to contain much more than a superficial simplicity. Jeff Bridges was great as Obadiah Stane. For those who know the comics, they know his lot in Stark's life. For those who don't, well... let's just say that the actual plot twists and surprises are one of the movie's weaker points.
Iron Man works for the most simplistic of summer movie desires. It's nothing groundbreaking, but it also is not so cheesy that I was rolling my eyes and screaming at the screen every minute. It's not the pile of shit that Michael Bay would have made it. It gets mucho brownie points for that! You wanna see shit blow up? Wanna see Robert Downey Jr. be funny? Check this flick out!
NOTE: Stay after the credits for a significant cameo, and some substantial set up for the next movie.