Sunday, 28 April 2013

Iron Man 3

by Shane Black

Iron Man (3)
Iron Man 2
? →
Avengers (7)
The Avengers
Thor: The Dark World →

I hope I can protect the one thing I can't live without. That's you.
Tony (to Pepper)

After New York everything's changed for Tony Stark. He almost died through a portal to another dimension, and fought against aliens, along with a group of superheroes, while he's only a man in a can. Things did not improve when seven months later (it's Christmas time), an international terrorist who calls himself the Mandarin hits America with a series of attacks. In one of them Happy, Tony's friend/chauffeur/bodyguard, is wounded: now it's personal.

As last year with The Avengers I went to watch this movie just as it came to theatres, and once again here in Italy had a lot earlier (april 24th), while in USA they'll have to wait until May 3rd. Since the first time I watched the trailer I started waiting for this movie, and the expectations were not disappointed. Iron Man 3 excited and surprised me, amused and satisfied me!

I started to like this movie a lot since the beginning, whan with a flashback Tony (the narrator's voice) recalls several meetings made at a conference in Switzerland at December 31st, 1999, including Yinsen, the doctor that was imprisoned with him in Afghanistan who saved him putting the magnet in his chest. Returning to the present we meet the post-Avengers Tony, more than ever obsessed by his armor (the first we encounter is the Mark-42!) that he equipped himself with subcutaneous implants so he can call them only with movements of his arms. In addition, as revealed in a touching and extraordinarily honest statement, after New York he's no longer able to sleep, he feels inadequate and he's afraid. It's an unusual Tony, in many ways, the one we see in this film, and it is not surprising given that the near-death experience he experienced in The Avengers has changed him a lot. In the previous movies, I was very impressed how his health issues were an important part of the plot: in the first we focus on the fact that he has shrapnel in his chest that aim to stop his heart, in the second we have the palladium poisoning. In this film, his problem has different origins, psychosomatic: Tony has frequent panic attacks at the mere mention of New York. However, this does not prevent him from showing off the usual irony and arrogance, and of course his genius, as when he makes a whole arsenal with the stuff bought at the supermarket. Our Tony fights a lot without his armor, but when he's in need he can obviously count on the various models and Jarvis.
I guess that this all brings out the matter that the hero is Tony Stark, not Iron Man, the man, and not the armor, although Tony held to point out a couple of times once again how those two things are inseparable from each other. The ending surprised me greatly, among other things I did not expect this was definitely the twist most successful for me:

Although in this film they're physically together for very little, Tony and Pepper are as beautiful as ever! The scene between them that I liked the most is probably the one when Stark's home is attacked
In particular I loved very much the evolution of Pepper in this movie, if I may say so. In many ways she remains the same contradiction between perfect efficiency and adorable clumsiness,

Let's talk now about the villains! Ben Kingsley is fabulous os the Mandarin, pity not to have enjoyed his original voice! Having chosen such a big actor as big bad, I was sure
The other villain is Aldrich Killian starring Guy Pearce, very charming after the "transformation" from loser, but is the kind of crazy bad guy that is not the one I prefer. Anyway he still makes his good evil figure

About the other main characters I'll write just a hint. The boy, Harley, is a gimmick that I didn't expected, so far we never got to see Tony with children, and the interactions between the two of them are certainly among the most entertaining in the movie.
Maya Hansen, the scientist, is a charachter I do not particularly liked, I find that she was a bit thrown in, making us believe that there was something to expect from her, which insead remains in the background,
Finally, Colonel Rhodes wears the War Machine armor, repainted in stars and stripes and renamed with the embarrassing name of Iron Patriot. He also starred in some nice action scene but mostly without armor.
Happy, going in a coma at the beginning of the film, is not much participating. The actor who plays him, Jon Favreau, who also was the director of the first two Iron Man, this time restricts himself to this small role and to filmmaking.
Stan Lee made his usual inevitable cameo, this time in the role of a very excited judge in the competition for Miss Chattanooga.
Last note: the movie opens with the music of Blue (Da Ba Dee) by Eiffel 65, an italian group: small MOMENT of national pride! :)

Eventually, let's talk about the after credits scene!
About the credits, I liked them very much! They showed scenes from this movie but also the previous two, and if I'm not mistaken even The Avengers, and the image we saw was relevant with the presented topic (for example, for the music there was Tony dancing). It's nice!

As the first movie of Phase 2 Iron Man 3 had the hard task to not disappoint fans while returning to have only one hero as protagonist, and I would say that it menages very well, indeed, maybe even exceeded expectations! From the trailer, rather gloomy and sad, I feared this movie would have taken a more dramatic turn, however, although this kind of scenes are not missing, the irony of Stark and some gags are not lacking too! And thank goodness! After The Avengers now I always expect that along with spectacular duels, great special effects, exiting plots, analysis of the characters and some dramatic turns of events here and there, these films also make me laugh! :)
Now the next appointment for Phase 2 is with Thor, in October, and mayby it's because I'm fueles, maybe because I'm lookig forward to The Avengers 2 (which will be released in 2015) since april 2012, maybe because there is Loki in it:), but the trailer has impressed me more than a little! :)

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