Our 16-year-old film blogger Jack Bool reviews: Iron Man 3
- Credit: Archant
As a lifetime comic book fan, I remember way back in the year 2007, when Marvel studios announced that they were developing a live-action Iron Man film.
As an avid fan of the character I became incredibly excited and to this day I still remember the first time I saw the image of the Iron Man armour. Of course when the film was released I did not hesitate to go and see it, and unsurprisingly I loved it, skip forward two years then came the sequel. I have to admit I was disappointed and by the time The Avengers came out I was even more disappointed. Now I understand that a lot of people may be thinking how can a comic book fan be disappointed with The Avengers? Well let's just put it this way, my intention was not to go and see Transformers with superheroes, and amongst all things I expected a lot more. Since then I have to admit I really have fell out of love with the Iron Man character, but thankfully this movie has restored my hope in the Marvel cinematic universe and Iron Man in general, because Iron Man 3 is a great film.
The plot-line this time around see's Tony Stark's world being torn apart by a formidable terrorist known as the Mandarin, and after a near death experience he starts an odyssey of rebuilding and retribution.
In terms of being a superhero film, I think Shane Black has really set a high standard here. By no means has he matched the dizzying heights of Christopher Nolan's Batman films, but in terms of recent superhero outings it's definitely up there. The one thing I admired about the film was that it completely abolished everything I disliked about Iron Man 2 and The Avengers and as I said it reminded me of why I liked the character so much in the first place.
The film is very well written and the performances are arguably the highlight. By now I think it's fairly self-explanatory that no-one could pull of the role of Tony Stark quite like Robert Downey Jr. as once again he delivers an exquisite performance that is funny, smart and quite spectacular. Of course Gwyneth Paltrow is present and this time round, character wise, she's got a bit more to bite in to. Initially I was sceptical of that, because I didn't want her to be involved in the film too much, but this is not a problem as her screen time is fairly balanced and her character has become slightly more interesting, which is of course another compliment to the script-writers.
Don Cheadle returns, but the additions of both Ben Kingsley and Guy Pearce leave the biggest mark. In my opinion aside from Downey Jr. the two characters make the movie. For example one of the essential things with any superhero movie is that you need a good villain and thankfully in this department Iron Man 3 doesn't fail to deliver. However, I did have this one tiny niggle with the Mandarin character. Despite being announced a couple of months ago that the Mandarin wouldn't have his trademark alien rings I was a bit upset from a fan boy perspective, but nevertheless despite being marginally ticked off by it, I highly doubt that they would have worked with the majority of the movie, so in that sense, whilst it upset my inner nerd, I think the team behind the film made the right decision.
The Special effects on the other hand are absolutely fantastic. Admittedly I'm not usually taken aback by CGI, but this time I was. Everything was just so well-crafted and from a technical aspect I would go as far as saying that they were some of the best I have ever seen, with one scene in particular standing out amongst the rest.
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Now without spoiling anything there is a twist just over half-way through the movie, and initially I was rather shocked, and I've noticed that a lot people seem outraged by the decisions made, but honestly, as a comic book fan I didn't mind it at all, and the reason for that was simple… I thought it was a very brave thing to do, and as a result, I thought it made some of the characters even more interesting, which is always a bonus.
In terms of 3D, I don't think it's compulsory. I mean I definitely think the film is worth seeing in IMAX, but it's just a shame that when viewing it in that format, the 3D comes along with it. However I have to admit, I was that engrossed by the film that I actually forgot I was watching it in 3D, so if you enjoy it as much as I did, who knows, you may not even notice it's there.
One final thing that I will touch upon is the tone of the movie. This time round it seems slightly darker and I think it works brilliantly. I've heard another critic label it as being somewhere between that of The Dark Knight and The Fantastic Four and in that sense I would agree, but as I said it works brilliantly and as long as the humours there, it's all good.
Iron Man 3 is a great movie, its blockbuster entertainment at its finest. It's funny, daring and full of interesting characters. It manages to improve on the disappointment of both its predecessor and The Avengers and I would argue that it's a better film than the first, which is of course a massive statement in its own right.