Iron Man 3

iron-man-3-official-hd

My family and I went to the theatre to watch the 2D matinee showing of the 3rd installment of the Iron Man franchise. After a disappointing second installment, I approached this one with caution. My husband and eldest daughter were keen to see it. I was surprised at how many people were in the theater, as it was such a beautiful day and spring has been a long time coming. I also suspect I’m getting a bit old and jaded, because my enthusiasm is waning for superheroes.

This movie takes place after The Avengers, and refers to the NYC incident of that film in vague terms. It implies that Tony Stark (charismatically portrayed by Robert Downey Jr.) is still shaken by those events and has not fully recovered. So when a new menace, in the form of a super villain called the Mandarin (delightfully portrayed by Ben Kingsley) strikes, it isn’t until he targets Stark personally that his alter-ego Iron Man gets involved. The Mandarin unleashes a reign of terror that includes destruction of property, kidnapping, public executions and an army of bioengineered combustible super soldiers. To expect logic and plausibility from a superhero plot is asking a lot. The plot in this film is better than most of its genre. There were a few twists that I saw coming, yawn. I nearly dozed off in the first half of the film before Stark had some skin in the game.

This movie has its strengths which includes many laugh out loud moments and quippy dialogue. It doesn’t get too heavy with the action sequences and most are quite enjoyable, especially the one involving a plane crash. This film is certainly better than Iron Man 2. But it doesn’t beat the fresh surprise of the 1st installment. And at a 2 hour and 15 minute runtime, it was too long. The final showdown seemed to drag while trying to pack an emotional punch.

What this movie did get right was that it gave us plenty of Tony Stark. The producers figured out that it was Tony Stark that gave these films charm. Kudos for them, learning from the error of Iron Man 2’s endless CGI action scenes involving robots. Some of my favorite scenes in this film involved Stark stranded in small town USA, a thousand miles from the action, with a bum Iron Man suit. With the help of a seriously neglected kid, Stark managed to McGyver his way back. Adding a kid to the mix was also a very clever artistic choice. It broadened this film’s appeal toward a younger audience. Tony Stark’s comedic fish out of water scenes were magnified by his ineptitude with children.

I also have a soft spot for Guy Pearce who plays a great smarmy villain in this film. I first took note of his moving performance in The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert; I loved to hate him in L.A. Confidential and he had me completely won over by his starring role in Memento (one of my all time favorite films). He has made the most tedious melodramas (HBO’s Mildred Pierce) bearable. As for the other actors, Gwyneth Paltrow had a chance to kick some serious butt; that was cool.

So this film was more good than bad and I enjoyed it over all. So did my husband and eldest daughter. But it is not a film that I would go out of my way to watch again. My youngest thought it was ok; she found the plot boring but liked the many sequences that had her laughing out loud. We stuck around for the end of the credits for a fun final scene; it was good to see Mark Ruffalo in the Marvel universe again.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lesley
    May 14, 2013 @ 21:07:48

    Wonder of Wonders, I actually saw this movie during its theatre run! We had an unexpected child-free day. It was pretty much what I expected, not bad. Loved Ben Kingsley. I get kind of lost in big action scenes – I can see things moving but I can’t follow. Happened here, too much flying metal. But my big beef is with how the motivational element in Iron Man 2 was totally negated at the end.

    Reply

    • dvdiva
      May 15, 2013 @ 08:38:58

      I agree Lesley, the ending was the weakest part , for the reason u mentioned as well as the technique used of a rushed narrative resolution. But by then I was glad the movie was over. It felt long. Good but not Great.

      Reply

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