Wednesday, June 14, 2017

'Iron Man' is treat for casual, diehard fans: Flashback review

Nine years ago, Marvel Studios debuted the first of its blockbusters with Robert Downey Jr. in "Iron Man."
In July, "Spider-Man: Homecoming" will mark RDJ's seventh onscreen appearance as Tony Stark/Iron Man. Wow! Stark has gone from being a self-destructive loner to the big bucks who funds the Avengers to a man morally opposed to Chris Evans' Captain America and now with Tom Holland's Peter Parker/Spider-Man, a reluctant mentor. Double wow!

Here's my non-spoiler review of "Iron Man" as published on ...

May 2008 -- If "Iron Man" is any indication, this superhero film will be a great introduction to the very promising summer movie season. ...

The Marvel Studios film is a treat for both casual and diehard fans. 

People who think "Iron Man" is only the name of a Black Sabbath song will enjoy the snappy dialogue, fantastic cast, snazzy special effects and ultimately have an enjoyable movie-going experience.

The avid comic book reader will be pleased with how accurate the Armored Avenger's story is compared to the source material. Indeed, director Jon Favreau has managed to connect with the spirit of the character while not overlooking small touches that will satisfy the geekiest of fans. 

Stan Lee, a Marvel Comics living legend, makes a cameo as a Hugh Hefner-like socialite surrounded by two beautiful blondes. There's also Jarvis, the name Tony Stark (Iron Man) gives to his interactive computer; it's also the name of the Avengers' faithful butler in the comics.

Like his comic book counterpart, Robert Downey Jr.'s Stark is a drinker and constantly tinkers with the technology he has created. The first close-up Favreau has of Stark is not of his face, but of the glass of alcohol he is holding while riding in a Humvee. The director has said many times while preparing and filming "Iron Man" he intends to address alcoholism in a sequel.

(In the spring of 2006, Cary's Comics Craze interviewed Favreau - via MySpace of all things! -- when "Iron Man" was in pre-production. Did you know he initially contacted Marvel about directing a Captain America film?! See, even 11 years later, you might learn a thing or two about the Marvel movie universe!)

And before I forget, stay through the credits for what's easily the most thrilling bonus scene in the superhero film genre. Without going into details, the clip features a cameo finally worth pumping your fist in the air as well as the tantalizing promise of more films featuring multiple Marvel characters, including Iron Man.

Grade: A

For more on the CCC perspective on the onscreen Armored Avenger:

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