There was a dark time in my life, a time where I thought Iron Man 2 was better than Iron Man (2008). But, what was not to like? The film saw the return of Robert Downey Jr as Tony Stark, it featured Mickey Rourke fresh of The Wrestler (2008) as the films villain, Scarlett Johansson kicking ass in a skin tight cat suit and it brought War Machine to the big screen! However, upon re-watching it, I quickly realized my mistake and came to terms with the fact that this is not as good a film as I gave it credit for and I feel ashamed for owning and liking it.
I won’t bother going into the Avengers problem, in that everyone has mentioned that Iron Man 2 basically acted as an extended teaser for The Avengers, as there are far worse things wrong with the film. For starters, you’ve got the plot……..or plots. After the success of the first film, the filmmakers thought that in order to for the sequel to be a triumph, they had to throw EVERYTHING at it. We’ve got the Whiplash storyline, the Justin Hammer rivalry, the return of Shield, the Arc Reactor chest piece slowly killing Tony, Pepper Potts becoming CEO of Stark Industries, Jim Rhodes becoming War Machine and Tony Stark’s Daddy issues Unfortunately there is not enough time to fit it all in, hence why the War Machine origin is slapped together within two seconds, why Mickey Rourke spends the later part of the film sitting around moaning about his bird. The film has these incredible storylines to choose from, but instead we get Tony Stark pissing in the Iron Man suit……cinematic gold.
It’s moments like that where the film reminds us of the amazing talent that is being wasted. Scarlett Johansson is a brilliant actress, yet she is reduced to nothing more than a sexual object for Favreau to drool over, Sam Rockwell is more of an annoyance than an actor in this film, trying and failing to out-mug and adlib Downey Jr’s performance from the first film and poor Gwyneth Paltrow is shoved to one side to make way for more shots of Johansson’s arse. Marvel try too hard to outdo themselves in this film, with forced attempts at “cool” or “funny” moments being shoved down our throats rather than coming naturally. Because of that, the film starts to become a chore to watch and although it’s not the worst film in the world, it’s a disappointing follow up to the first film.
David ParkerPin It