Tony Stark’s alter-ego Iron Man is back in a triumphant, or perhaps a not-so-triumphant, return. Again, to seek to do right by those who stand by him.
Iron Man 2 (2010) Marvel Film Review
Life is one big party for Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.). Always the playboy, to those who know him best, it would seem he no longer has control. Most recently, his irrational activities include a showy, overblown entrance into his company’s annual expo, which includes signing over his company to his loyal secretary Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow). His inventions win the attention of a senate panel who want his blueprints, perhaps not for the most honest of reasons.
His friend Lt. Colonel Rhodes (Don Cheadle) tries to reason with Tony, to no avail. Turns out, Tony’s behavior isn’t without reason. The very device keeping him alive is also destroying him; the lithium is slowly – and painfully killing him. Tony finds he has bigger things to worry about when yet another display of his rash behavior at a European speedway uncovers a new foe. The man, a Russian native named Ivan (Mickey Rourke) is out for revenge. Before long the director of the S.H.I.E.L.D initiative, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) is involved and Tony’s new personal assistant, Natalie (Scarlett Johansson) may not be all she seems.
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After watching the first movie in this franchise, it did surprise me that Tony is as likable as he is. This sequel takes that, and turns it inside out. The writers play up his crazy, unhinged behavior to the max this go-round but it isn’t without good reason. As a character, Tony’s attitude is one without limitations. Perhaps, the biggest mistake this sequel makes is using Tony’s rebellious manners to propel so much of the story. It’s a love/hate thing for me. I like his tendency towards being a justified rebel because this is lacking in the world, but then it’s those same traits that hurt the people who care the most about him.
Don’t mistake me; I love this movie, possibly more than the first. This popcorn flick also adds the addition of new characters, plus bonus points for not resurrecting the enemy from movie one. The interaction between Natalie and Tony is fun, and I did like the addition of her character. She shakes things up a bit creating new situations full of conflict and the banter, amusing. Paltrow’s Pepper is still cute as ever (note the adorable rooftop scene). The fact that nearly all the cast returns gave this the potential it needed to be another box office success, keeping up Marvel’s trend of by now consecutive crowd pleasers.
Following in the footsteps of predecessors, the special effects are cool as is the heroic gestures of Tony and Rhodes. The cool showdown is just what audiences need as the last push to the end, and what an end! If the third film is to be the last, I’ll cross my fingers that writers don’t turn all noble sacrifice on us in which the scenario of hero-must-die unfolds. This is something I doubt because of the recent success of The Avengers. A second movie would probably require if nothing else, an appearance by Tony Stark but there is always that possibility.
Highlighting a good script is a great cast who do their characters justice and some cool effects, Iron Man 2 shouldn’t be missed, especially if you are a fan of Marvel or superheroes. Its concept may be purely fiction but is a reminder that there are heroes whose selfless sacrifice is why we are free today.
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CONTENT: There is no sexual material but there are a couple of crudities and Tony does hit on various women. There is also is some flirting between him and Natalie [she wears numerous form-fitting outfits]. There is plenty of social drinking. A man cuts in half two or three race cars causing them to fly through the air and/or crash into other cars. Two men are killed from a hanging; we see a woman take down two dozen security guards. There are a few instances of profanity but it’s rare. This is PG13.