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Downey breathes life into Iron Man 3

Paul Peterson

Paul Peterson

As is always the case, I forgot something last week.
Add to my list of movies that I Want to See: The Internship. Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson are back as a couple of burnouts who get a chance to reinvent themselves with a prestigious internship at Google. Their last outing, Wedding Crashers, was a huge hit and one of the funnier movies to come down the pipe in a very long time. I’m stoked.
So, back to reality and I’m happy to say that the addition of Shane Black as director to the Iron Man series has totally inspired this franchise. IM2 was weak. It was all Tony Stark and not enough action. Black brings an impressive resume to the table. His first film was Lethal Weapon. He collaborated on Lethal Weapon 2, did The Last Boy Scout and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang among others. It’s all very high impact testosterone driven action and it works.
I’m a big Robert Downey Jr fan. I like his acting chops and it’s hard not to cheer for him. He came about as close as you can to losing it without actually having to go on Dr. Drew.
This movie – this series – works because of him.
The story is great and the superhero character has its own dynamic but make no mistake. Iron Man works because Downey breathes life into him.
It helps that it’s the third installment and Black takes Stark back to his early roots.
We see more of the playboy party hound.
RDJ is glib and detached except when it comes to Pepper Potts, the always lovely Gwyneth Paltrow. Well even then he’s pretty much a smarty pants. Her role is expanded here and there are rumblings that in the next film she emerges as a sidekick to Stark, named Rescue. But I digress.
There’s a lot to like here.
The action is stunning.
Good bang for the buck that’s for sure.
Of course there were a lot of bucks thrown at this.
It’s impossible to truly get the number but north of 200 million is a given.
Any action pictures is only as good as the story and story needs a good guy and a bad guy.

Ben Kingsley is a great actor and that does translate into a great villain. He is The Mandarin, and his pathological committment to destroying everything in his wake is commendable. I like his take a lot. There isn’t that hint of a fatal flaw like most deranged world dominators. His voice gets lower when he’s at his most menacing and you can see that he’s not so different than Tony Stark in terms of his psychological make up. It seems silly to review a comic book in any detail.
There are quirky moments. Jon Favreau, the original director, acts in this one but of course doesn’t direct. It just seems odd although I don’t begrudge anyone a paycheque but it has that whole Hitchcock element to it.
Don Cheadle is good in everything and he plays off Downey Jr really well.
I fully enjoyed Iron Man 3.

I went in expecting less and got more and that’s always a bonus.
If you’re a fan of the series then you’ll enjoy seeing your old friends doing their thing in new and exciting ways. The pace and tone is definitely different and I think better.
If you don’t like mindless fun in an action picture, good luck staying awake during the Great Gatsby.
By the way, when was the vote held for that thing being called A Beloved Novel?
I want a recount.
As always, other opinions are welcome, but wrong. That’s it for this week. The cheque’s in the mail and I’m outta here. Paul.

Filed Under: News from Everywhere ElsePaul Peterson

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