Sunday, May 11, 2008

Iron Man

I took my brother to see this as part of my effort to keep him entertained during his visit to L.A. And entertained he was--this flick ROCKS! I'm not big on the whole comic book (O0ps! "Graphic novel"...) superhero thing, but Iron Man has an extra special secret weapon. No, not the robotic suit--Robert Downey Jr. I was a bit bemused to hear he had been cast as the superhero, but he is simply perfection in the role of the brilliant yet cynical playboy, Tony Stark. His transformation from cavalier weapons manufacturer to impassioned avenger of evil.

Downey Jr.'s performance balances quick-witted quips with emotional depth. His eyes convey rage, pain, regret along with that ever present "bad boy" twinkle. He's got so many great lines in the very well-paced script by Mark Fergus & Hawk Ostby and Art Marcum & Matt Holloway. One of my favorites, after a presentation of the new Jericho missile to the military in Afghanistan, Jim Rhodes (Terence Howard) tries to join Tony Stark in the lead Humvee only to be told, "This is the funvee. The humdrumvee is back there."

Great supporting performances by Jeff Bridges (who is almost unrecognizable seeming to channel Gene Hackman) as the insidious Obadiah Stane and Gwyneth Paltrow who overcomes the ridiculously name of Pepper Potts to create a character who is tough and funny and totally sympathetic. Director Jon Favreau (whose incredible job realizing the classic Marvel comic character on the screen almost makes the douche-bag vanity credit he takes forgivable...) shows up in a small role as Hogan, the chauffeur.

This movie will probably end up on my top ten favorite movies for 2008--to-date it's only one of two movies I've seen so far this year that have rocked my world. Interesting factoid: as the credits rolled I noticed the name "Peter Billingsley" as one of the executive producers. "Hmmm, I wonder if that's the same Peter Billingsley who played Ralphie in A Christmas Story." And it was! He also had a bit part in the film--and he's grown up to be quite a hottie!


  1. Got to see this...I love Robert Downey Jr. An actor who can actually act. I knew it woudl be good.

    You have to go see The Visitor. I'm interested in your review.

  2. I haven't seen The Visitor playing nearby--although I've read good things about it.