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IRON MAN 2_not disco enough

May 10, 2010

I saw Iron Man 2 tonight… and it sucked.  Sorry folks.  I’m not saying the film doesn’t have any entertainment value. It certainly stimulates the senses.  You see stuff happen, you watch people talk, and then shit explodes.  But I couldn’t help but wonder why… why was I watching this?  I’m not asking why this movie was made (money – and they got mine) but why was I being told this story. For all the flying mecha suits and gratuitous explosions, nothing really happened.

[SPOILERS BELOW]

The problem:  there’s nothing at stake…. other than Tony Stark’s pride, I suppose.  Both antagonists, Ivan Vanko (played laughably by Mickey Rourke) and Justin Hammer (Sam Rockwell), are both driven by jealousy (and revenge, to some extent.)  Neither is hell bent on world domination nor psychotic mass murder.  There’s absolutely no threat to humanity.  Nope, they just don’t really like Tony Stark (and the way the character is written in this outing… neither do I.)  The main storyline, I’m talking the plot of the film, revolves around Vanko’s family feud with Stark’s.  Only Stark has never heard of him.  Deep, isn’t it?   Had these two ran into each other at some random dive bar, this movie would have been a back alley brawl (and probably more entertaining to boot.)

So, yeah, this movie’s big hook, the reason we’re all dying to see it, is because Vanko and Hammer are jealous of Tony Stark, be it his financial success or luck with the ladies and because of it they either want to ruin him or get some for themselves.  It’s funny, their motivation is the same as Jim Carrey’s Riddler in Batman Forever except even that character actually had plans for world domination. Vanko makes no allusion to future plans and Hammer… well, I’m pretty sure he just really wants to get laid.  He’d probably be a pretty cool guy if he got lucky every once in awhile (in fact, Sam Rockwell performance kinda steals the show.  I found myself enjoying the film more when he was on screen mostly because he delivered such wonderful gems as: “not disco enough.” — ha.  can’t wait to use that.)

Anyway, I was bored.  Even the characters themselves seem bored… because, and I can’t stress this enough, there’s nothing at stake.  I mean, remember in The Dark Knight when Rachael meets her demise?  How shocking it was?  Well nobody even holds a gun up to Pepper Potts (played by Gwyneth Paltrow) or anything.  She’s stressed out about work quite a bit, I guess that’s a concern.  And Scarlet Johansson‘s character, Natasha Romanoff, I’m not even sure why she exists.  Does she really do anything?  Even Vanko’s drone army isn’t a threat to anybody other than Tony Stark.  The film hints that there is danger posed toward the public fleeing the Stark Expo… but if Stark himself would just fly off over the Atlantic, all of the stupid drones would follow him.  Everybody would be  saved (including random children in Iron Man masks.)  Instead, Stark keeps circling around them, over and over again.  Sigh.

And then there’s the subplot involving Tony’s energy supply: it’s slowly killing him.  But even that is never intertwined with the main plot. Tony is, more or less, sick.  It really doesn’t affect him or those around him (other than Tony handing over his responsibilities to his friends.)  Tony doesn’t almost die in combat because of this problem.  There’s no risk of him randomly exploding in public because of this problem.  Nope.  More or less, Tony doesn’t feel well.  Nick Fury helps him get better.  And then, oh yeah, the story gets back to Vanko… which, I guess, doesn’t pose much of a concern to S.H.I.E.L.D. since Fury (played by Sam L. Jackson) and his agents go off to other, more important matters of their own (out in New Mexico.)  Need help, Tony?  Tough shit.

Actually, I don’t blame S.H.I.E.L.D. for running on Stark since it really only takes him and War Machine (Don Cheadle) a total of one minute to actually defeat Vanko during the final confrontation.  I love that Iron Man and Whiplash (Vanko’s name in the comics) only square off face-to-face two times in the film and both times Stark grabs hold of his whips and uses them to defeat him.  Nice writing, boys.  Ugh… don’t even get my started on the writing…

Okay, to wrap this rant up, this movie felt like a throwaway mid-season episode to one of your favorite television shows.  You accept it because you like the show, you like the actors, and you know that next week, most likely, you’ll get something better… maybe.  Throughout the film, I found myself wishing I were watching the first Iron Man so I guess that’s my recommendation… re-watch the first one.  It’s better written, it’s better directed, and the movie is just a hell of a lot more entertaining.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. Hack Riveni permalink
    May 17, 2010 3:47 am

    I don’t really feel like getting into it right now, but this movie might be a half of a step above crap…

    Nah, it’s crap.

    • cklockwork permalink*
      May 17, 2010 3:58 am

      I found myself thinking about this movie again late last week and I realized I may have been comparing it, in my head, to TDK (seems like I compare everything to that now.) That’s just not fair. Suddenly, I thought of Wolverine……… now that is crap. And suddenly, Iron Man 2 isn’t that bad. Though I still expect better.

  2. Hack Riven permalink
    May 19, 2010 2:43 am

    I wasn’t comparing it to anything. the story was pretty pointless. there was about 15 minutes worth of story in that movie surrounded by lots of Hollywood fluff and MTV drama.
    consider you DO compare it to TDK when Dent’s press conference upon Batman’s request to unmask …the story drastically changes. you’re sitting there and thinking, “shit, what now?” as it turns the plot upside down and sucks you in.
    Iron Man 2 had set itself up in a similar way. but nothing changed for Stark except he was given more opportunity to scoff in the government’s face. yeah, we already know he’s that suave and smooth. nothing compelling there – the still snarky Stark just keeps dishing out the jokes except he is poisoning himself behind the cameras …not by alcoholism, but by too much Iron Manning. too risque to go the other route? well, luckily SHIELD shows up so he can conveniently bail himself out.

    How did Vanko know Stark was going to race?
    The whole BFF Rhodey “theft” and him being surprised the government’s plans to abuse their newly stolen tech just didn’t sit well with me. too easy. too typical. too predictable. too safe for Hollywood. too boring. nothing could’ve saved the movie from that point.

    Justin Theroux (actor turned screenwriter) just wasn’t up to the task. he is a lucky bastard though, because you just couldn’t screw this up since the overwhelming popularity of the first guaranteed exceptional profits for the second.

  3. May 28, 2010 7:02 am

    Really awesome article! Really!

    • cklockwork permalink*
      June 2, 2010 2:34 am

      thanks for the support! glad I’m not the only Iron Man 2 hater around here — though I’m still not saying Iron Man 2 was terrible!! Only disappointing!!!

  4. May 30, 2010 3:29 pm

    Hehe am I actually the first reply to this awesome article!?

  5. March 5, 2014 1:21 pm

    Is there a website or music store that would allow me to choose which specific karaoke songs I would like on one CD?.

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