For both comic book fans and those who can't tell the Green Lantern from the Green Arrow, IRON MAN is the type of summer blockbuster whose appeal lasts far beyond the season. Robert Downey Jr. stars as Tony Stark, a billionaire playboy and genius who puts as much effort into chasing skirts as he puts into chasing his next big idea. A trip to Afghanistan to sell weapons quickly devolves into chaos, and Stark finds himself at the mercy of a warlord who wants him to build a missile. Instead, Stark creates a powerful suit of armor, turning him into Iron Man and allowing him to escape. When he returns to America, his assistant Pepper Pots (Gwyneth Paltrow), friend Rhodey (Terrence Howard), and right-hand man Obadiah Stane (Jeff Bridges) all marvel at the change in the man they knew. IRON MAN is the first film to be self-financed by Marvel Studios, and they should be proud of their freshman effort. They didn't take any obvious routes with choosing the cast or crew, and it pays off. Director Jon Favreau, who also has a small role in the film, is best known for directing ELF, but his first action-driven effort is nearly flawless. Casting Downey was gutsy but inspired: this is his first big action picture as well, but the wit he displays in films such as the cult hit KISS KISS, BANG BANG works perfectly for the character of Stark. IRON MAN features nods to its beloved source material, as well as to the classic animated series of the 1960s. But even for the uninitiated, this film provides an interesting entry into the Marvel superhero's universe. Audiences who keep watching after the credits have rolled will be rewarded with a bonus scene.
Wow, He Really IS Iron Man!
Marvel Comics, like it's counterpart nemesis DC, has had it's share of hits and misses when it comes to translating it's superhero catalog to the big screen. While successes like Spider-Man and XMen tore it's way to the top with ease, there's also the ones that got clobbered like The Punisher and the first attempt at Hulk in 2003. But with CGI technology reaching closer heights than ever before, now Hollywood has the ability to truly turn those ink and color panels to life, and no opportunity has been better received than with Iron Man.
Tony Stark is basically a war profiteer that he and his company Stark Industries creates and manufacturers weapons so the good ole USA can win in a variety of battles, and in these reflective times, the battle currently is in the Middle East. When he himself is captured during a weapons demonstration that leaves numerous deadly pieces of shrapnel permanently close to his heart, he and a fellow scientific prisoner implant a device in his chest to keep them from reaching that area & in return becomes a major power source. When the captors want Stark to create an ultimate bomb, Stark turns the tables and creates a bodysuit of armor to escape and in return he realizes that he cannot go on in building weapons that usually just falls in the wrong hands, and unknowingly to Stark, by his business partner whose only concern is the almighty dollar and Tony's demise. So with his new and improved version of the suit that helped his escape, he's gonna beat them at their own game and find his superhero within.
Let's state one thing:this is a GREAT cast. Robert Downey Jr not only looks the part of Tony Stark, but with his natural ego-driven comicial flair, he was born to play this role. Even the supporting cast of Jeff Bridges (who with his shaven head & beard might be hard to recognize), Terrence Howard, and a surprisingly Gwyneth Paltrow, who you'd figure would do a role like this in the early stages of her career not the opposite, bring the story along with a great pace. There's really not a weak link in the bunch. As for the CGI effects, of which most times I personally dread, they come off very natural and believable here. Where as in 2008's The Incredible Hulk when the lead character was of organic origin, Iron Man is pure solid-looking steel and because of that fact can be replicated much better without any doubt if the object is really on the screen or not. Visually all parties pulled off an amazing feat with Iron Man and honestly without flesh and blood to get in the way, the CGI does what at this point it can truly do best.
Even though this review is for the single-disc edition, Paramount still gives you quite a value here than just a typical bare-bones disc. With a film presentation that has one of the best looking and sounding standard definition combos I've ever seen, they also include on it over twenty-four minutes of extended & deleted scenes which at least half of are worthy of a director's cut. There's even an Easter Egg hidden here maybe giving you a preview of what extras the 2 discer might have in store for you. So for fans on a limited income, or those that just want the movie, you won't go wrong by buying just this.
Overall this was a great origin superhero film that didn't drag one bit within it's 2 hours and 2 minutes. Great cast, great story, and a bonus ending scene (featuring a surprising cameo) that will make you demand more in the near future.
Iron Man DVD
Iron Man is a 2008 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name. Directed by Jon Favreau, the film stars Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark, a billionaire industrialist and master engineer who builds a powered exoskeleton and becomes the technologically advanced superhero, Iron Man. Gwyneth Paltrow plays his personal assistant Pepper Potts, Terrence Howard plays military liaison James Rhodes and Jeff Bridges plays Stark Industries executive Obadiah Stane.
The film was in development since 1990 at Universal Studios, 20th Century Fox, and New Line Cinema, before Marvel Studios reacquired the rights in 2006. Marvel put the project in production as its first self-financed film. Favreau signed on as director, aiming for a naturalistic feel, and he chose to shoot the film primarily in California, rejecting the East Coast setting of the comics to differentiate the film from numerous superhero films set in New York City-esque environments. During filming, the actors were free to create their own dialogue because pre-production was focused on the story and action. Rubber and metal versions of the armors, created by Stan Winston's company, were mixed with computer-generated imagery to create the title character.
Marvel Studios and Paramount Pictures, the distributor, planned a $50 million marketing campaign for the film, which was modeled on Paramount's successful promotion of Transformers; Hasbro and Sega sold merchandise, and product placement deals were made with Audi, Burger King, LG and 7-Eleven. Reviews were very positive, particularly praising Downey's performance. Downey, Favreau and Paltrow will return in the sequel Iron Man 2, scheduled for release on May 7, 2010.
Iron Man (DVD, 2008, Widescreen)
The first big blockbuster of 2008, "Iron Man" is flat-out fun. One of the biggest surprises for many people is that this fun does not come from the action scenes (they're fine, by the way). What really amazes in "Iron Man" is a tour de force from Robert Downey Jr. (they could've named it Downey Junior- The Movie) and a solid script, that efficiently introduces us to the Iron Man history and proves to be a fascinating entry in a possible new franchise.
The movie tells the story of Tony Stark, an inventor and a playboy that is captured by terrorists and forced to create WMDs. While on captivity, he creates a powerful armor and manages to escape. Returning to America, he begins a new life as superhero Iron Man.
Another interesting aspect of "Iron Man" is that it is the first comic book based movie to openly discuss the 9/11 trauma. After all, we start off with terrorists as the bad guys. Its script has a strong political aspect to it, and it's one of the things that manage to keep the audience's attention. It's still an action flick, but that doesn't mean it can't have some content. The characters are good, but they ultimately are overshadowed by Downey Jr.'s performance. Hilarious and heroic, his Tony Stark is the ultimate Marvel action hero. Tough luck, Spiderman.
"Iron Man" is an action blockbuster for a mature audience. There will be more adults interested in the story than teenagers. After all, it is a political adventure. The movie hits and misses, but it still adds up for solid entertainment and lots of popcorn fun.
Not many superhero adaptations to the big screen satisfy those of us who grew up reading Marvel and DC comics. Surprise! Iron Man surpasses expectations on so many levels. Whether you're looking for action, romance, intrigue, vengeance, humor or special effects, Iron Man has it all!
Morton Downey Jr. gives an inspired performance as the suave, wise-cracking billionaire Tony Stark; as far as I'm concerned Mr. Downey MAKES this movie. Guys and gals will love Gwenyth Paltrow who portrays Tony's super-efficient and attractive girl-Friday, Pepper Potts. She has this really good-looking "girl-next-door" appeal and provides plenty of awkward sexual tension with Tony.
There's enough hi-tech wizardry and computer-aided-design eye-candy to satisfy the geeky sci-fi lovers among us, along with cool weapons and aerial dog-fights.
One of the best things about this movie is that the military AREN'T shown as mindless war-mongers, but as what they are; competent, highly-trained patriots. Capitalists, though, get the usual Hollywood shaft.
I urge you to get this movie, grab a big bowl of hot iron-filings and enjoy the ride!