“Honestly, I’m a bit hungover. I’m not even sure if you’re real.” Iron Man 2 (2010)
I’m still trying to process this number at the moment, because overall, it was a bit of a disappointment.
I mean it did entertain me, a little, but maybe that’s because I went to see it on my birthday and was still massively hungover from the night before. Watching The Island of Doctor Moreau would probably have “entertained” me in that state of mind.*
Alcohol sweats and head-spin aside, this was little more than the good bits shown in the trailers with a lot of padding out in between. Mickey Rourke’s Whiplash at Monaco, Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow beating up guys in a corridor, that cool suitcase armour…wait, that’s it? Oh, there’s an army of giant robots, some extra War Machine…and again, that’s it?
Is it a bad sign when you’ve seen all the highlights of a film before you even walk in? Heavy under-usage of all that great casting as well – sure, Scarlett‘s great to look at, but worth way more than she was given to work with here. Normally, I’m never left disappointed by a Sam Rockwell performance, but on this occasion I just felt he should have had further screen time. Even though he was the highlight of the entire film for me – turning the Justin Hammer of the comics into a younger, suaver piece of shit was a wise move, and brought a bit of much needed fun to the proceedings. Robert Downey Jr just didn’t deliver the goods for me though, which was a surprise. He captured the “total dick Tony” aspect at the beginning, all cocksure swaggering charm, but from then on seemed disinterested, and fully removed from the Stark of the first film.
Maybe I was just distracted by Rockwell’s amazing fake-tanned hands…
Much more fun could’ve been had with Rourke’s character. I’d expected a showdown between Vanko and the Black Widow after all that security guard felling the leather-clad beauty did, and I’m sad there wasn’t one. Though after how quickly Rhodey and Stark dispatched Whiplash, it might have been shit.
Too many characters with not enough to do left me wishing they’d just focussed on a single threat, a single villain. Made one cohesive plot as opposed to throwing in lots of storylines and threading them together with some pretty cheesy dialogue – “Ah got ma eye on you.” Come on, is that better or worse than Hasselhoff’s Nick Fury?
I know there’s a franchise to think about and set up here, what with the eventual Avengers movie and the numerous Marvel outpourings coming to a cinema near you – Thor, Captain America, a Fantastic Four reboot, the new and improved Spider-Man, a possible SHIELD feature that’s now being rumoured, that Doctor Strange sex tape fiasco…okay I made the last one up. You get the picture. There’s shitloads of stuff to come, and I better move on quickly before my brain gets sidetracked by the idea of hot Stephen Strange sex action.
Setting up a future movie should not be the main focus, and it definitely shouldn’t detract from the actual film itself. Also, I’m all for the trend of an end credit reveal, but not if after ten minutes of scrolling all you get is a cheap plastic hammer. Jesus, I hope the actual props in Thor are of a better quality or Kenneth Branagh better get to firing some people at double-quick speed.
I feel bad that I can’t be bothered writing more about this, but Iron Man 2 was a letdown. Especially considering how much love I had for the first film.
I know I’ll go and see the third one when it happens though. I’m a sucker for hard-drinking womanisers who dress up like robots.
*On second thoughts, no hangover is that bad.