May 02 2008

Iron Man

Published by at 10:18 am under Blog,Movie Review,Movies

As the Cinemagic Festival draws to a close, the organisers reflect on six months work, sponsorship deals, input from children, the organisation of each event and the patting on the backs of those who deserve to be patted on the back.

And in screen 17 of Cineworld Cinema on Parnell Street at 7.20, as all of this celebratory oration ensued, I patiently bit my nails waiting for the closing movie, Iron Man to begin. Credit where it’s due. This past week has seen workshops, classes and events designed immerse young people in the world of film and screen and to nurture talents of other young up-and-coming filmmakers of the future.

But…IRON MAN!!!

The silver screen outing of the iconic Iron Man is the perfect mix of comedy, drama and superhero campness and mayhem. Robert Downey Jnr’s Tony Stark is a solid role. It is not a simple lock-and-load action hero. It requires some gritty acting to pull off a character that sees a story arc begin with a millionaire playboy lifestyle, move into tortured kidnap victim, emerge into a born again humanitarian only to be driven by a sense of guilt and revenge to become a potential hero to the world. Downey is perfect in this role. Drawing upon his own life, he plays a man who possesses incredible talent but is wasting it on a lifestyle of alcohol and loose women.

Seen again in the upcoming Edward Norton take on the role of Bruce Banner/Hulk, Marvel seem to have realised that high octane action and massive explosions cannot cut it anymore. Perhaps being burned by Bana’s Hulk, they now see that quality acting and intelligent writing is required to bring the often decades of comic book complexities to the big screen.

Iron Man surpasses expectations. The excellent script did not miss a beat and the direction made sure that each character (including the excellent support act of Terrence Howard in the role of Stark’s friend, Jim Rhodes) were explored beyond a 2D stereotype. On top of acting and script prowess, this movie does not fail to deliver on heavy duty action and huge landscapes. As we travel from the deserts of Afghanistan to the cities of California to the beautiful home of Tony Stark, we are greeted by destruction and mayhem at very turn. Even the lighthearted comic elements of the movie are infused with action (the scenes in which Stark tests his burgeoning technology are fantastic).

This film is also a perfect example of good use of CG. Needless to say the big flying machine and the robot battle scenes are epic in their use of computer generated imagery, but it is the more sybtle use of CG (notably when Gwyneth Paltow’s Pepper Potts must reach her hand into Tony Starks chest cavity) that prove that Hollywood is finally learning to utilise the available technologies rather than simply pump a load of CG action in and hope for profits (see the aforementioned Hulk or the last of the Matrix movies, Revolutions).

The first blockbuster of 2008, Iron Man sufficiently whets the appetite in preparation for Indiana Jones return, the tentative big screen version of Speed Racer, Shyamalan’s The Happening, the updated Incredible Hulk, and of course the huge Dark Knight. I can’t wait!

Once again, a huge thank you to Darragh and to all those involved in the Cinemagic Festival. Congratulations on a very successful week and I look forward to next year’s events.

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12 responses so far

12 Responses to “Iron Man”

  1. Yvonneon 02 May 2008 at 10:50 am

    Sounds great, I’ve heard great things about Iron Man, will have to see it. Can’t believe I missed the whole Cinemagic hoopla! Will have to catch it next time around.

  2. Andrewon 02 May 2008 at 3:04 pm

    Dark Knight is the one I’m most excited about by a long way.
    Oh, I got that She and Him CD, ’tis not bad at all.
    Did you know Scarlett Johansson is now releasing music? Go to http://www.zmemusic.com and scroll down a bit and you’ll find a video. The guy who writes that blog doesn’t like the way she sings but I actually think she’s not bad.

  3. Darrenon 02 May 2008 at 3:10 pm

    @Andy I have that track on my iPod – I think it’s brilliant and am really looking forward to the album release.

  4. B'dum B'dumon 04 May 2008 at 1:20 am

    anyone able to tell me what happened after the credits?

  5. Darrenon 04 May 2008 at 1:24 pm

    @BdumX2 Yip!

    HERE BE SPOILERS:

    Samuel L Jackson, who is now officially the coolest man on the planet, has broken into Tony Starks house. He stands in the shadows when Stark comes home and slowly reveals himself as a man with a scarred face and an eye patch. He says he is the head of S.H.I.E.L.D., Nick Fury, and wants to talk to him about the Avengers program. Very very cool!

  6. B'dum B'dumon 05 May 2008 at 5:39 pm

    Samuel L Jackson?! I’m worried about the sequel now.

  7. patrickon 07 May 2008 at 3:24 am

    Iron Man was practically flawless as a super hero flick; it drops pretty obvious hints that would indicate a sequel as well… i’m thinking the next one should be equally great

  8. B'dum B'dumon 07 May 2008 at 4:31 pm

    superhero films are the only types of films where the sequel often betters the original film.

  9. Peteron 09 May 2008 at 8:57 pm

    I’ll be going with Emlyn tomorrow to check it out and let you know if your review is accurate or if you will totally have to re-write it!

    😉

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