Iron Man 2....by IMTHATDUDE [review]

Iron Man 2

Smart money says Iron Man 2 will bring in close to $117M (domestic) this weekend, but that don’t mean it’s as good as the original.   The arguably upgraded cast doesn’t make it better either (despite the additions of Cheadle, Rockwell, Johansson, Garry Shandling, and Rourke).  Of course the primaries from the patently AWESOME original flick that set a new standard for action comic book movies, rivaled only by Christian Bale’s Batman flicks.  Robert Downey, Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Leslie Bibb, Sam Jackson, and Jon Favreau are all back.  Don Cheadle pinch hits for Terrence Howard (I heard it was over bad bread, don’t know fo’ sho, but that’s what I had heard). 

Jon Favreau’s back behind the cameras again, but they went with a different writer - Justin Thoreaux Tropic Thunder – I have to say, I’m equally surprised by the move and the fact that Thoreaux had the nerve to pick the pen back up on this one.  Good thing he did, too – or I’d have no respect for the cat.  This was a decent script.  Not remotely as good as the first one, but it was above average.

Action junkie that I am, I took what passes for my free time to run out and see Iron Man 2 immediately – notwithstanding my own apparently well-founded intuition that it wouldn’t be able to measure up to the dopeness of its predecessor.  Scarlett Johansson next to Gwyneth Paltrow in tight business suits and stilettos… yes, that is fresh all by itself - My fight to resurrect the pervasive use of the terms “fresh” and “dope” continues.  Some people can’t let go of jheri curls or wearing their pants below their crotch despite having on cinched up belts – me, I have “fresh” and “dope.”


After defiantly admitting to the world press that he IS Iron Man, Tony Stark (RDJ) has been hauled in front of some dumb ass panel of Senators regarding the creation of and possession of the Iron Man “weapon.”  Stark, the billionaire CEO of the family’s weapons manufacturing and defense contract business, continues a seemingly spiraling downward pattern of recklessness as he brushes off the Senate panel (chaired by Sen. Stern (Shandling)) in a brazen display of flippancy and culminating in the verbal attitudinal equivalent of flipping the bird.  To her dismay, Pepper Potts (Paltrow), his trusted personal assistant, dormant love interest and conscience, nervously observes her friend’s self-destructive behavior – and by self-destructive, I mean more so than normal.  Colonel Rhodes (Cheadle), Stark’s best friend, is getting pissed with Tony’s behavior and has had just about enough.  He’s ready to take whatever steps are necessary to right the ship, if Stark can’t handle things – including resorting to a military style intervention.  For my legal heads or former residents of Brooklyn’s Atlantic Yards – think Eminent Domain.

Meanwhile, Stark’s business rival, the hapless Justin Hammer – tired of constantly being upstaged - seeks any advantage available to snake away business from the Stark and to embarrass the man who has repeatedly given him a business bitch slaps him at every turn.

And if all that doesn’t grab you (and I doubt that it did)… there’s a big tatted up angry Russian genius ex-con named Ivan Vanko (Rourke) with a major grudge against Stark, Stark’s company, family and alter-ego.  But worse than all that… Vanko has a computer, a metal shop, street connects, and a tv.  Let Iron Man 2 tell it, the Department of Homeland Security aint sh!t.  Vanko decides to strike out at an unprepared Tony Stark and “make god bleed” so the “sharks will come.”

The movie, like everything else in life, only gets interesting when the “sharks” come out.  It took a little while but then the action and one-liners started to rain relentlessly.  As much as I love my action flicks with unnecessary violence, the random placing of innocent civilians in harms way, the random debris, collapsing buildings, the litany of bullets fired by otherwise accurate people that never seem to hit or damage the stars or the target of the bullets… ”Boom!  Explosive!”I have to admit, I do enjoy a good one… but I just didn’t care with IM2.  For example, there was this scene when one of the robots points a loaded gun at a little kid – fully prepared to merc him – I was a little hyped.  For one moment I was hoping they’d bust a cap in that stupid little brat, like ”Bloaw!  That’s what you get for not holding your mother’s hand, ya little bastard.” Just for a second… but, seriously, that would’ve brought a tiny bit of edge to an otherwise soft movie.  A little bit of edge would have been a welcome addition to this action-comedy; instead, it was like watching Rush Hour 3 (not I or II, but III) with robots and lasers.  Even still, I guess it was okay.  Hindsight: I wouldn’t run out to see it on day one, but it was aight.

The disappointing parts of this movie were probably all direction issues.  Sam Rockwell and Mickey Rourke were pretty lackluster.  I thought Rockwell… didn’t and Mickey Rourke (accent – very cool) literally howled at one point and it was entirely too unintentionally Black Dynamite.  In general, the lack of intensity in the film made it noticeably weaker than the first.

Now, let me tell you what was hot about it:

              1) Gwyneth Paltrow and

and Scarlett Johansson.  NIIIICE.

2) RDJ was being Robert Downey, Jr. – Born to play Tony Stark in the same way Matt Damon was genetically engineered to play Jason Bourne.

              3) Cheadle is THE most underrated actor in Hollywood.  Name one person more underrated than Don Cheadle… Go ahead… I’ll wait… You can’t.  Even if you could, you’d be wrong, so I’m just going to move on now.
              4) The double-entendre, sarcasm and sexual innuendo.  I really liked how the majority of the target audience (Mensa applicants, the lot of them) for this movie turned out to be too dumb to catch all of the jokes thrown at them. 
              5) The introduction of some more members of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the hints at undoubtedly upcoming the Avengers movie.

Aside: Shout out to Garry Shandling.  Just his facial expressions make me laugh.

Overall, it was pretty good in a “thank God it wasn’t Tropic Thunder” kind of way.  IM2 is a little too goofy for my liking (with respect to action movies), but it was good enough to not be a waste of money. 

PLEASE NOTE:  There is an easter egg waiting for you if you stay until after the credits finish rolling.  BUT… It is SOOOOOO not worth waiting for.  I suggest that you google it and save yourself the time and nuisance of waiting for it. I’d skip the IMAX experience and catch a MATinee experience instead. 

That Dude Gives Iron Man 2: 3


1. Curses.  I got GOT! 
2. Couldn’t be more under-whelmed./I gave them my hard earned cash for this clunker?
3. Not too shabby, I won’t ask for my money back.
4. Pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good./Worth the 12 bucks.
5. Why are you reading this and not seeing this movie? Jackass.


  1. I am a huge Marvel geek and thought the switch in Rhodes would bug me, but I only wish Cheadle had been cast in the first one. Your right about how great of an actor he was.
    Spoiler ALERT!!!
    Keep reading only if you've seen it.

    My only problem with the film was the fact that some of the scenes from the trailers were cut from the movie, i.e. "You complete me." -RDJ as he jumps out of the plane after Pepper Potts kisses the Iron Man mask. I guess it will force me to buy the blu-ray and see what else was cut. I would have done this already though!!!

    I was also a bit disappointed with the villians lackluster challenge but I guess Iron Man had a lot else on his plate that enough drama and suspense, if you catch my drift. Dying kind of distracts a man who builds and is a weapon from keeping the world peace.

  2. That did kind of annoy me, too. I wanted to see how that line worked in the scene. It will no doubt be on the blu ray alternative scenes or something.

    I need good villains in my action movies and I can't say that these guys were. Between that and the fact that RDJ seemed a little bit too Ari Gold (Jeremy Piven, Entourage), I didn't think this was as good as the first.

  3. I saw this one and hadnt seen the first one and I thought it was ok. I would have to agree about Scarlet!!



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