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Old 05-02-2013, 11:57 PM   #587
Spider-Fan
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Default Re: Official Iron Man 3 rate/review thread. - Part 1

First up for Marvel's second phase of films is the third film in the hit Iron Man franchise. In this installment, we find Tony Stark is about to go head to head with his arch-nemesis...sort of. Not really. If there is one thing that can be said about Iron Man 3, it is that there is a lot to talk about.

The film makes a point of trying to make Tony Stark rely less on the Iron Man armor and fend more for himself. Stark is dealing with a lot in this film. After the events of The Avengers, Stark is experiencing PTSD and anxiety. He doesn't sleep for days and he does little more than tinker with his suits. I like this angle for Stark. The PTSD provides some good humor in the film, but it also helps us get into Stark's head. The scene where he tells Pepper about everything he is going through since the events in New York is one of the best scenes of the whole series. On top of this, Tony becomes obsessed with revenge when the Mandarin's plot hits close to home, but the conflict challenges him in a way that the series desperately needed. In Iron Man 2, the suit made everything too easy. Watching Tony Stark have to do things on his own was a breath of fresh air.

While the story does a lot right with Stark, the film has some glaring plot holes or moments that make Stark look stupid. When the Mandarin's people come and shoot missiles at his home, Tony Stark finds himself very unprepared (despite challenging the terrorist on TV and giving him his address). The well advertised Mark 42 by this point isn't weapons capable, but it is the armor Tony chooses for the confrontation. Why? If people are trying to kill you and your loved ones, shouldn't you have been better prepared? Stark has 42 armors, why did he pick the one that he can't fight back easily with? Furthermore, later in the movie, Stark allows JARVIS to remotely control the Iron Man armors! If he was able to do this all along, why not call on the other Iron Men for help? Seems more practical than letting terrorists trash your very expensive home and endangering Pepper. I know they had to make the armors out of Stark's reach, but the way it is done has too many plot holes. The film's ending also makes the core struggle of Stark's character moot. In Iron Man 2, using the arc reactor is poisoning his blood and killing him, but he needs it to keep the shrapnel at bay. At this film's end, Stark has the shrapnel removed with literally no explanation as to why he can do it now but not then. It makes the solution to his heart problem seem easy, and one wonders why he never did this in the first place! I can see the logic behind it, but it is poorly developed.

But, that isn't the main issue everyone wants to talk about. No, the elephant in the room is the villain. In the advertisements, they tease us with Sir Ben Kingsley himself as the Mandarin! Iron Man's ultimate nemesis and the leader of the Ten Rings! Or so we thought. As it turns out, Kingsley was a decoy for the real mastermind, Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) who created this Mandarin with the help of a think tank to cover up the bad side effect of experiments on his minions that may result in spontaneous combustion! I know comic book fans and Iron Man purists hate this twist, but honestly, I didn't mind it. The twist is shocking and the idea behind it is well done. Killian's goal of using a false face in order to manipulate the major players in the background is a great idea, and a good social commentary on the media. Granted, the flashback scene that reveals Killian was basically Syndrome from The Incredibles is fairly weak, but I think the idea mostly makes up for this. This was a very bold choice for Marvel, and I felt it worked.

While the film is better than most efforts at the third film in a superhero series, it will no doubt be regarded as one of the MCU's most divisive films amongst its fans. I felt that Iron Man 3 was an improvement over Iron Man 2, but falls short of the first film in the series. The ideas for a genius film are there, but a few bad plot holes keep it falling short of that potential. It also has a post-credits sequence that is amusing (bringing back Mark Ruffallo is always welcome), but unlike many other post-credit scenes, it really isn't essential or builds toward the next film in the Marvel canon. But at the end of the day, Robert Downey Jr. is amazing, the movie is fun, and it is a good addition both to the Iron Man franchise and the MCU in general.

Overall rating - 4/5


Last edited by Spider-Fan; 04-12-2014 at 02:27 AM.
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