Saturday, May 4, 2013

Iron Man 3 3D review

Iron Man 3's director and writer Shane Black has worked with the star of the movie, Robert Downey Jr., before. The film was called Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. (2005) That movie was a modern film noir with a sarcastic take on Hollywood filmmaking. And you get a similar snarky vibe on the Iron Man mythos with Black's screenplay co-written by Drew Pearce.

Iron Man 3 takes place after the events in The Avengers. (2012) Tony Stark aka Iron Man (Tony Stark) is having trouble adjusting after the battle of New York with the aliens. Stark is more involved with his Iron Man suits than running his company which he leaves to his lover Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) The problems that Stark is having is that he is suffering from anxiety attacks as a result of the New York battle. Meanwhile, the world is inflicted with horrible terrorist attacks ordered by a Bin Laden type villain in The Mandarin. (Ben Kingsley) When Stark's assistant and friend Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) is seriously hurt by a Mandarin bombing, Stark announces that he will get him and begins his pursuit.

This movie has severe problems. First, we can't take Stark's anxiety attacks seriously because there's little in exposition to show it. Plus, Black's direction is tone deaf when it comes to depicting him. Stark is always confident. This dichotomy saps the dramatic energy from the first half hour of the film. Like Iron Man 2's (2010) party of the stars movie this one continues the trend of not taking the material seriously. There's a major plot twist which is so ludicrous that if you're a fan of the Iron Man comics, you might throw your popcorn at the screen. Then there's a scene where Iron Man does a heroic act only to have the result literally ripped apart by a plot surprise. Look, I'm for bold storytelling but when you take a beloved superhero, show contempt for him, you're going to devolve to camp.

It's hard to review the performances in this movie. That's because the screenplay is responsible for the sarcastic performances. Robert Downey Jr. is very snarky as Tony Stark. His character seems to have contempt for those who idolize him as demonstrated by a funny but sarcastic scene with a TV engineer who is also a Stark fan. If this is a metaphor for Iron Man fans then Black and company just slapped their audience. Gwyneth Paltrow as Potts is the only one who can be taken seriously here since her character was written without sarcasm. Ben Kingsley should stop playing villains. He's a great actor but you can't take him seriously in some of his bad guy roles. See A Sound of Thunder (2005) and Prince of Persia (2010). It's like he can detect the camp in the character. As the Mandarin, he lacks menace but has a tinge of camp.

Iron Man 3 is a 3D conversion from 2D. And it shows. It suffers from all the bad things about 3D conversion. First, the movie is too dark. Case in point, the scene where gunships attack Stark's home. It's too dark for all the debris thrown around the screen. Visual mud. I would bet a quatloo that Black was not thinking 3D when filming. There's no pop or depth. I can't think of a scene made me say "wow." If you're going to see Iron Man 3, watch it in 2D.

While Iron Man 3 is not boring, it's a major disappointment. The ridiculous plot twists and sarcastic tone sinks the movie. Stay through the credits for a funny end scene. The grade is C Plus.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree , totally ruined the franchise! I hated this movie and the cheesy villains who breath fire! Stupid plot, not much action, just sucked! Really sad that this is how the movies will be remembered, pure s*** !