Iron-Man 2: Is he Back in Black or on a Highway to Hell?

I find the AC/DC tie-in to Iron-Man a little amusing, particularly as there's not a lot of their music actually in the new film. In fact the music in the new film was a resounding "meh" compared to the last outing.

That's about all the criticism I have for Iron-Man 2, except for one huge omission that I will get to later, but for now...

When a film like Iron-Man 2 comes out there are certain things, rituals, that me and my friends have to do. In this case it was buying Iron-Man on bluray and watching both the film and all the extras, of which there are many.

I have to say its a damn good purchase, if you're a fan of extras buy this, there is some great in-depth behind-the-scenes content. The detail that went into the first film was pretty well reported but watching those extras the sheer amount of layering that they did in the first film of technical/narrative/character detail is astounding. Until you see Iron-Man 2.

The care and attention that has clearly gone into making this film shines out of every shot. I'm not saying it's prefect, as my cameraman friend pointed out ("Well he clearly hadn't set up right for that focus pull in that scene", yeah thanks Ben just ruin it for everyone) but you can see the love.

The script is fantastically written and made even more brilliant by a fantastic cast who work so well together. Yes, the plot is a little dense but this isn't a Spider-Man 3 jumble of nonsense everything that happens has purpose or reason, and that goes for every element of this film.

You can tell that at every point someone has asked the important questions, Why is that happening? How could it happen? How would that work? All the kind of things that make a film work on the whole.

What is even more ball achingly good is the way this film goes beyond that!

At last we have a comic book film that really acknowledges that its hero is part of a larger comic book universe. Yes we've had Samuel L. lurking around after the credits in recent years but that always seemed a bit forced. And it's even more important now as the newer films are using material from the more modern marvel comics and they are very big on synergy and stories that feature across the whole marvel universe ie Civil War/World War Hulk/Secret Invasion/Dark Victory etc

And as I said this isn't like the "oh by the way there's a meteor with an alien symbiote that just happens to land near Peter's bike" mess that was Spider-Man 3. Nick Fury is there because he is supposed to be there, because he needs to be there, because in the comics this is the kind of time when he would show up and he would show up with a little story and a box. What's even greater is the fact that all the little cast members are just cool too as we have a return of Agent Coulson from the first film and I for one hope to see more of him. We also get to see Favreau flesh out his role as Happy Hogan, Tony Stark's long time friend and driver.

Favreau also fleshes out the style of the movie using the most stylized camera work than I've seen since Spider-Man 2 (the last great Spider-Man film), I particularly love the tail cam on War Machine when comes into land at an air force base, amazing detail.

But for all this work, all the attention to detail, they seem to have forgot the heart of the film. Boy could they have not done it on a more convenient film, the list of puns is endless but I just don't feel I can be mean about this film.

It honestly doesn't make any sense, all the pieces are there, this film should be down right pant wettingly good. But I think with all the detailing and fine tuning and tweaking they just forgot to sit back, relax, and have some fun.

Remember the A/V seizure that was Transformers 2, the scene in the woods were Prime takes on the Deceptacons and kicks arse till he ultimately dies in a ridiculously contrived manner. The film sucked, but that scene was genius, that was what you wanted to see, and if your a little bit simple like me you balled your fist and thrust it at the screen while mumbling "Yeah, go Prime" so you didn't embarrass yourself too much.

That's what Iron-Man 2 was missing, a balled fist and little embarrassment, they got so wound up worrying about getting it right they forgot to have a little fun.

You do get to see Thor's hammer though.



Post a Comment