There is never a shortage of superhero films and “Iron Man” got the worm before the rest of the birds. “The Incredible Hulk” and “The Dark Night” aren’t due until summer. Although there are many cheesy comic book pictures, “Iron Man” exceeds the expectations of the typical superhero movie with its wit and special effects.
Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr., “Goodnight, and Good Luck,” 2005) is the CEO of the advanced weaponry company Stark Industries, which produces high-tech weapons for the U.S. military. After his father death, Stark inherits his father’s billions and lives his life as a powerful, arrogant playboy.
While in Afghanistan, demonstrating new weapons to the Air Force, his convoy is attacked by terrorists. Tony is wounded by a Stark Industries missile and is captured and held hostage in a cave when a doctor (Shaun Toub) saves his life.
Ultimately the terrorists want him to recreate the missile that put him in harms way, however, he instead builds a protective, weapons-laden suit and rescues himself. Once back home, he improves his suit of armor, sees the light and goes about making right the many wrongs he and Stark Industries have done.
Robert Downey Jr.’s portrayal of the legendary Iron Man is not only believable but natural. His goals are always achieved and his personality, attitude, and physique is credible. In the way the iron suit is custom made to fit Stark, this role was custom made for Downey Jr.
Terrence Howard (“Hustle and Flow,” 2005) portrays Air Force weapons liaison, Jim Rhodes, but his performance contradicts his character. Military officers should be strong and decisive, and Howard’s portrayal as a weak, gullible yes-man lacks realism.
Jeff Bridges (“A Dog Year,” 2008″) plays Obadiah Stane/ Iron Monger. From the beginning of the movie, evil drips off Stane’s character. It is predictable who the villain is due to his facial gestures and sneaky actions.
Gwyneth Palthrow’s (“Running With Scissors,” 2006) portrayal of the strawberry blonde Virginia “Pepper” Potts, Stark’s assistant is respectable.
Shaun Toub plays the doctor, Yinsen, who saves Stark’s life. His portrayal of the Middle Eastern whose selflessness is honorable because he puts his life in danger to better humanity and help make the world safer.
Actor-turned-director Jon Favreau (“The Break-Up,” 2006) does a proficient job. He manages the perfect amount of action in this film. Favreau’s vision for this picture is professional and driven.
The special effects of “Iron Man” are tasteful and not over the top. The realistic aspects of the explosions did not out shine the acting or the plot of the movie but spiced it up. The hardware and technological advances were impressive and proved that Stark’s genius is worth capturing.
“Iron Man” is not like the typical superhero action movie. Comedy was a huge part of this movie which grabs the viewer’s attention. The on-going joke between Stark and his robotic creation is hilarious and never ceases to disappoint.
Writers, Mark Furgus, Hawk Ostby, Art Marcum, and Matt Holloway’s fresh-take on the comic that was introduced in 1963 was unique because of the adaptation and technical advances portrayed in the new millennium.
The creator of Iron Man, Stan Lee’s vision of this super hero was different then the other Marvel superhero’s because his superpower is his brain and ability to advance in the technical field.
Overall, “Iron Man” is a great hit and provides comedy and action something for the whole family. Everything fits well and keeps you truly entertained
My Rating: 3 out of 4 stars.
Run-time: 126 minutes.