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Iron Man (2008)
Heroes aren't born. They're built.
Director: Jon Favreau
Science Fiction

After being held captive in an Afghan cave, billionaire engineer Tony Stark creates a unique weaponized suit of armor to fight evil.

Iron Man (2008)

Too Contained

I did not expect much from this. Marvel just seems to make what seems to me ordinary, boring movies. I was hopeful this time because the three main actors have done some rather elaborate work so far as reflected acting. Downey is something of a prince at this business of simultaneous personalities.

But we have none of that here. I just saw “Forbidden Kingdom” and it uses what is now the state of the art regarding cameras in fights: the camera dances. It folds us into the action. Not so with any Marvel-produced project. We might as well be watching C D deMille with colour.

Nearly all these Marvel stories are predicated on science gone wrong. Contrast that to heroes from other companies, where it is just cosmic reality or even training that happens to make someone special. But these stories all derive from the Japanese pattern of postwar anti science movies which in turn were based on “Frankenstein.” (The Japanese would not have known the earlier gollum films.)

So the driving force here is science. As it happens, I would have been disappointed by the blandness of everything, but they ruined the driving force of science for me. Stark was supposed to have gone to MIT with Colonel Rhodes (who wears an MIT ring), but we are told Stark was summa cum laude at MIT. But that school is unique in never engaging in that foolishness. Think about it.

But what’s a greater offence is how this, the man with the best mind, the most money and the most advanced science, does his work. I’m thinking particularly of the computers. This is the one place where we could have been dazzled. But what we see is ordinary, as if it were envisioned not by a man with great imagination and inventiveness, but by someone who simply doesn’t know.

Suppose you were shown a car from 50 years in the future and it had a key, steering wheel and dial speedometer. Its the same effect, and sorta takes the gas out of the thing.

Oh, they made Gwyneth a redhead.

Posted in 2008

Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.


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