Monday, April 29, 2013

Movie Review: Iron Man 2

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Action and fun
Cons: A few holes in the plot
The Bottom Line:
Superhero flick
Manages to surpass first
Action, powers, fights






Iron Man Grows Stronger in His Second Outing

I am one of the few people, it seems, who was only luke warm to the original Iron Man.  So I wasn't that hot to see Iron Man 2 , but several friends wanted to go see it.  I tagged along, and it turns out I'm glad I did.

It's been roughly six months since Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) revealed to the world that he is Iron Man.  From the outside, things are looking up for him.  He's created world peace since villains are afraid of Iron Man.  And he's opening a year long expo devoted to showing off the latest and greatest in technology to make our lives better.

But all isn't wonderful.  Tony is called before a Senate committee that pretty much demands he turns over his Iron Man suits.  The element Tony uses to power the suits (and his replacement heart) is slowly killing him.  And there's a man in Russia who is building his own suit to get his revenge on Tony.  Will Tony survive any of this?

My biggest problem with the first movie was the Tony Stark character.  He was a womanizing, arrogant, drunk.  And those were his good qualities.  Here, they've managed to tone it down.  Oh, it's still there, especially in the first few scenes.  But the story grounds Tony so much more, so I could relate to him.

There are actually several sub-plots going on here, and they keep things hopping.  There was never time to get bored because we were always on to the next story.  Yet everything was pieced together so well I was able to follow things perfectly.  There are some plot holes, but I never even thought about them until after the movie was over.  And I have to give them credit for bring everything together to a great climax.

Okay, so while I did enjoy the climax, I actually think my favorite action scene was earlier in the movie.  The one involving the race cars.  If you've seen the movie, you know what I am talking about.  And if you haven't?  I'm not going to spoil any more except to say it looks amazing.

The one thing the multiple plots did was cut down on the action again.  There weren't too many of them.  Only three really stand out in my mind.  But, like I said earlier, I was entertained the entire time.  And the effects that went into the scene we do have are absolutely amazing.

Also amazing was the cast.  I was actually able to like Robert Downey, Jr. this time around.  Gwyneth Paltrow as love interest Pepper Potts absolutely steals the show.  I was glad to see more of her this time around.  Scarlett Johansson is lots of fun as Natalie Rushman.  Frankly, about the only annoying performance was Sam Rockwell as the head of a rival company.  Yes, I think he was playing the part that way on purpose; it certainly appeared to be the way the character was written.  But it still annoyed me.

I was confused about one thing, and my roommate brought the same point up as well.  We both sure thought that Tony and Pepper had gotten together at the end of the first movie.  This one acted like that hadn't happened.  Since it's been two years since I saw the first one, I could be completely wrong here.

They are certainly setting things up for The Avengers movie they are planning for 2012.  Several characters who will appear in that movie (and their own first) showed up here.  I bet I missed several of them, too, since I am not a huge comic book guy.  My friends were geeking out at all the references, however.

No, this movie isn't perfect.  But Iron Man 2 is actually a nice step up from the first movie.  If you want a fun superhero flick, this will do very nicely.

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