Iron Man 3: The Assessment

iron-man-3-posterThis entry will include spoilers for Iron Man 3.

Okay, Iron Man 3 has been out in theaters for 2 weeks, so I hope it’s fair game to discuss it in detail.

I want to start off by saying that Iron Man is my favorite live-action superhero movie. Period. It hit every beat perfectly for me.

I enjoyed Iron Man 2. I think it had a few missteps, but for the most part I really enjoyed it.

Then came Iron Man 3.

It’s only been two weeks, but when I ask myself, “What cool stuff happened in Iron Man 3?”, I can’t really remember anything. I think the action highlight of the movie was when Iron Man saves a dozen people falling from an airplane, but that was pretty much it. And yes, I’m including the huge action sequence at the end, because it felt completely empty and anticlimactic.

Here’s why: For more of the movie, Tony Stark isn’t in the Iron Man suit. Without him in the suit, the whole point of Iron Man is gone. Iron Man is fun because we wish we could climb into that suit and do amazing things. We believe we can do that. But if the suit operates just fine without the man, what good is the man?

That’s what the end of the movie feels like: empty. There are a bunch of robots fighting bad guys (the relentless types of bad guys who have no motivation other than to be bad) while Stark runs around trying to get into a suit. It felt empty, not climactic.

A big deal is made in the movie about how the suits can come apart, fly around, and come back together like in the Iron Giant. It’s a cool effect, but I really struggled with the idea that a piece of a suit could fly thousands of miles in just a few minutes using an internal power source…especially since that power source is in Stark’s chest, not the suit.

A big deal is also made about Stark’s broken suit. He spends most of the movie trying to fix his latest suit instead of wearing it (why did the writer think we wanted to see an hour-long stretch of movie without Iron Man?) And then at the end of the movie it’s revealed that he had about 40 suits ready at any time. Why didn’t he call one of them 30 minutes into the movie? He could have worn a different suit every 10 minutes and it would have been awesome!

I guess what I’m getting at is that I was really hoping to see an Iron Man movie. Instead I got a Tony Stark movie. Tony Stark is pretty great, but he’s not movie worthy by himself.

Overall, I’m sure you can tell I was disappointed by Iron Man 3. It had some good moments, a few funny lines, and impressive special effects as always. I just wish it had more Iron Man in it.

8 thoughts on “Iron Man 3: The Assessment”

  1. I second your opinion! This is what I wrote when I saw it a couple of weeks ago – “Iron man 3” was pretty average. Since it’s newly out I won’t post any spoilers, other than to say it was funny at the start if a bit predictable, exciting in the middle, but a bit disappointing at the end. Post credits scene wasn’t worth waiting for. Acting was fine, as were the sfx and audio, very much seen/heard it all before. Rating: 3/5

  2. My husband and I saw Iron Man 3 (in 3D) and we felt the same way. We were disappointed and felt like there were many plot holes, a few of which you mentioned. I’m not totally into superhero movies, but after having seen Iron Man 1 and 2 – which I enjoyed – even I could tell something was off in this movie. There was a different director, so I’m sure that played a huge role.

    The whole thing with Mandarin was very disappointing and anti-climatic, as well. According to my husband, they could have done a lot more with making Mandarin a great villain.

    And yes, the stinger at the end after the credits was strange.

    I can’t believe I’m actually writing comments about an Iron Man movie review … 🙂

    • I’m glad you two understand where I’m coming from. Some of the reviews said such wonderful things about it, and I wondered if I was missing something. I loved the director’s other work with Downey Jr. (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang), but this just didn’t vibe for me.

  3. Interesting that we had such different perspectives, Jamey! I LOVED the third one. I loved it because without Iron Man (the suit) I thought that Tony Stark was able to come into his own. He was able to be a superhero without relying on his superpowers. He was able to be a superhero because he is a *good man*. I thought that this one was ultimately more fulfilling because it WASN’T just about the suit, it was about the man inside the suit, and what a man must become when he is forced outside his comfort zone.

    • But…I want to pretend that I can fly around in a robot suit. And the way I do it is by watching Tony Stark do it. 🙂

      Agreed about the villains. The one reason I kind of liked Rockwell was that he was very similar to Tony Stark, and yet he got absolutely no respect.

  4. Though I do agree that the villain was remarkably lacking, I found that to be true in the 2nd one as well. Sam Rockwell, normally one of my heroes, really disappointed me in #2. And Lebowski, while somewhat more complex at the beginning of the first Iron Man, evolved into a power-hungry megalomaniac who didn’t do anything for me as a villain.


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