Every Marvel movie review I write seems to start the same way… me explaining why I had no faith in the movie going into it and how after having seen the movie, and having had a great time, I am shocked… simply shocked that it was so good and I enjoyed myself so much. Iron Man 3 is no exception… I hadn’t seen a single one of the Iron Man films in a theater, and after being a bit lukewarm on the second installment, I wasn’t that excited to see the third. In the end… I had fun, it’s a great summer popcorn action flick with a number of great twists and a few unexpected nuances that impressed me.
Everything we have come to expect in an Iron Man movie, and any Marvel property at this point, is present… great witty one-liners, a love interest in peril, an intertwined universe populated by other superheroes, and some introspective personal hurdle to overcome. In this case, that hurdle is Tony Stark dealing with PTSD from his experience in New York during the massive battle at the end of The Avengers.
That struggle, his flashbacks and anxiety attacks triggered by having flown through a wormhole into another dimension and being spit back out while plummeting to his eventual doom, is my favorite aspect of the film. Although it is explained to us, that explanation never felt beaten over my head… the attacks are somewhat subtle and felt surprisingly natural and believable.
One good lesson that this film seems to have learned between the previous installment and this movie is that there aren’t too many villains. If there is one gripe I’ve had with a few superhero movies it’s that they try to cram in too much too soon… Spider-Man 3 is the prime example of this… and Iron Man 2 bordered on doing this, which is the main issue I have with that film. This time around, and I won’t spoil anything, the focus is much more direct… this is a film about terrorism and where that terrorism is rooted… and it may not come from where we’ve been led to believe it comes from.
I’m not going to go into anything further plot-wise… the fun in this film is watching the story unfold and being as surprised as you can be, and wonderfully enough, I was surprised on more than one occasion… and I enjoyed myself the whole way through… with perhaps one exception, but it’s too easy to pick on Gweneth Paltrow these days… so I’ll save that for my personal amusement.
Iron Man 3 doesn’t reinvent the wheel… but it certainly doesn’t destroy it either. It’s a fun movie and a great way to spend a couple of hours when the weather gets a bit unbearably hot over the summer and you need to escape into an air conditioned theater for a while. I will leave it at that.
I. Ron. Butterfly.,
Cornelius J. Blahg