Six Reasons Why I Think IRON MAN 3 Is A Great Movie.
I have now watched it six times, and each time it seems to get a bit better. In this article I will give six briefly explained reasons why I think Marvel's Iron Man 3 is a great movie.
So the first time I saw Iron Man 3, I liked it but was gravely disappointed. I saw it a second time in the theater and that time I thought it was pretty lame. But about a week ago I bought the DVD and watched and thought it was pretty good, and better than people say. Yesterday I watched it for the fourth time, honestly I loved it! I don't know why it took four times but I think it's because once you accept a movie for what it is and stop whining about what you wanted it to be you begin to like it more. The movie has grown on me quite a bit, I watched it a fifth time just to make sure it was still good. Now I'm watching for a sixth time as I'm writing and still loving it. Anyways, I know this topic is overdone but the movie has really grown on me over time. I give my six briefly explained reasons why I love Iron Man 3.
1) It had a strong script and story.
First and foremost, the reason I like Iron Man 3 a lot is because it is the first and still the only Marvel Studios film that is plot-driven. The vast majority of the Marvel Studios films are character-driven or I guess action-driven (I don't know if that's even a term, but it accurately describes Avengers and Iron Man 2. Not much story or character in those, their claim to fame is eye dazzling action). I'm not saying the other films lack a plot, I'm saying that they are mostly driven by character development. Look at Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and Thor. Those are all character driven movies, Avengers and Iron Man 2 are what I'd call action driven. Captain America...I don't know, it tries to be character driven but fails at it. In fact it's not "driven" at all and that is one of the reasons why that movie sucked. Anyways I'm getting off topic. Iron Man 3 is the film with the strongest story and the most well thought out plot. Granted, it does copy a lot of it's plot off of Warner Brothers' The Dark Knight Rises. However that does not change the fact that is still the only Marvel Studios movie that is driven by it's plot. Also, I really liked the script and the writing. The dialogue especially from Ben Kingsley is very well written, not to mention well delivered. I thought that the dialogue between characters was excellent as well. The banter between Tony and Rhodey was excellent, the conversations between Tony and Pepper are excellent. The dialogue for Killian and Maya were very good too. In all honesty, aside from the three Nolan Dark Knight films and possibly Spider-Man 2 this movie has one of the most well layered and well written scripts of all time.
2) It took risks and chances and deviated greatly from your standard superhero movie.
The second reason I love this movie, is the way that it took a lot of risks and is vastly different from the norm. If there is one thing I don't like about comic book movies. It's when a director is hired and he merely plays the figure head for what the Studio wants. I love it when directors take risks, make changes, and take a chance on letting their personal flair shine through. I think it's things like those that made Nolan and Singer great. Not to mention Raimi, Burton and now we have Shane Black to add to the ranks. One big thing I disliked about films like Iron Man 2, The Amazing Spider-Man, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, etc. is that they don't do anything new or different. I'm not saying any of those are bad, they are all solid enjoyable films but they all fall into the realm of the generic comic book flick. Something which Iron Man 3 is FAR from. Obviously some directors can take it too far like with Brett Ratner for instance, who just straight up ruined half the series' characters. I'm not talking about doing that, I'm talking about making artistic decisions that reflect the director's personal tone. Because that's what I see movies as, a form of art. An artist who stays in the norm and plays it safe will never be great. I like it when directors express their personal tone as artists. That's what I feel Mr. Shane Black did in this movie. In everything from putting his own spin on The Mandarin, adding in bits of comedy through out, and styling it after his great Lethal Weapon films. Shane Black took a lot of risks and chances with Iron Man 3 and for that I give him props.
3) It took an introspective look into the mind of Tony Stark.
The third reason I think Iron Man 3 was a great film was it's character search into Tony Stark. I feel that Iron Man 3 was a strong plot driven movie but it did have some really strong character arcs. Particularly the one for Tony Stark, it takes a deep look into his mental status after the events of The Avengers. In The Avengers, Iron Man is the one who carries the nuclear missile through the portal into space. He nearly died, all that stress that he pretends isn't there is finally coming out in Iron Man 3. That's just it, he's realizing he's not the only powerful one out there. Previously in Iron Man 2, he was under the impression and belief that he was the world's greatest hero and America's savior. After the events of The Avengers, he is realizing how wrong he is. He is realizing that he is but a mortal man in a universe full of gods, aliens and monsters that he just isn't up to par with. In The Avengers he still acted at first like he was THE main hero, but after Thor made a mockery of him and Loki outsmarted even his great mind, and Cap said "without the suit, what are you!" He saw Hulk in action, and he saw thousands of extra dimensional aliens attack the world, and he saw SHIELD attempt to nuke the island of Manhattan. He also went through a wormhole to the other side of the universe. Facing terrorists, a few business rivals and a pissed off Russian have got nothing on all that. At this point he is realizing that he "is hopelessly, hilariously outgunned" he realizes that unlike in Iron Man 1 & 2, the fate of the country and the world cannot and does not rest on his shoulders any more. He becomes fearful, more driven to the point where he becomes obsessed. He spends all night coming up with more suits, because he finds a gratification in building suits because he knows that he's not tough enough alone. He knows he's not tough enough to be the world's hero but he doesn't want to admit it. So he challenges the world's greatest terrorist The Mandarin to a duel after his friend is nearly fatally wounded in a Mandarin attack. He pays the consequences and soon realizes his fears are in fact, now a reality. His greatest fear is that a villain would take what he loves most and that Iron Man isn't strong enough to win. This comes to be in the course of the film, it is even proven by the final action sequence where Iron Man is losing and can't win without Pepper and his suits. All of that concludes with him admitting he doesn't have the chops to be the hero the world can always call on. He accepts the fact that he is just a human in a world, no I mean a universe full of gods, aliens, monster, mutates and other creatures. He finally accepts the fact that he can't be the world's main hero any more, and he decides to focus on other aspects of life. If that isn't an epic character arc, I don't know what is.
4) It gave us more of what really makes him Iron Man.
The fourth reason I love this movie is the way it showed us more of what actually makes him Iron Man. One of the major complaints about this movie was that it wasn't an Iron Man movie, but more of a Tony Stark movie. What people are trying to say is that we don't see him in the armor enough, therefore this isn't an Iron Man movie. Well I think that's really dumb because helmets, suits, design, etc. all that IS NOT what defines a character. What defines a character is his arc, his experiences, what he cares about, etc. not a helmet or a costume. I personally thought that this movie showed us what makes him Iron Man just like the first film. We saw him use his intelligence to build weapons to use when his suit wasn't functioning properly. We saw him use more of his genius outside the suit, he lessened his dependance on the suit. What you must realize is that Tony Stark IS Iron Man, not just the suit. The suit and him are one. You must realize that the man made the suit, the suit didn't make the man.
5) The action scenes are spectacular.
The fifth reason I think this movie is great is the action sequences and the special effects. While this is hardly a reasonable singular reason to love a film, it is more or less "icing on the cake" You see I'm the type that doesn't need to see spectacular action to love a film. Which is why I love the Dark Knight Trilogy, Batman, Batman Returns, X-Men and X-Men: First Class. Great action doesn't automatically mean great movie, but it certainly does contribute and it sure does help. While Iron Man 3 is a great movie with strong script, story and character development. It doesn't lack in the action department. The attack on Tony Stark's Malibu Mansion is amazing, not only the effects but the context of the situation made it great too. It was an incredibly powerful scene, especially when it showed Tony's act of selfless heroism in putting the suit around Pepper and saving her first. Another amazing scene is the one where Iron Man saves the thirteen people falling out of the airplane. But the climax fight was freakin epic! I know some people thought the Extremis soldiers looked stupid, and that the suit army was dumb. I understand and respect that. But personally I thought it was great, it was so cool to see all of the armors fighting at once, I have never seen anything like that before. Also, this was the first time we see Iron Man face a villain that can face and beat him without a ripoff Iron Man suit. But one of my favorite things was when Extremis Pepper got to kick butt, I get that people think it was silly. But it was out of the ordinary, it was different, quite bad-*** if you ask me.
6) It helped to move along the greater universe, while still managing to have great standalone quality.
The sixth and final reason I think Iron Man 3 was a great entry into the MCU is how it managed to move the plot of the larger universe along while still maintaining tremendous quality as a standalone film. One of the things that makes Captain America: The First Avenger a weak movie in my opinion is the way that it sacrificed it's own quality as a film for the sake of the greater universe. It did this by instead of being an all Captain America movie they pack in things about gods and such. They also try to cram in the tesseract too. (as if it wasn't already introduced in Thor) They shortened Captain America's war time to the point where he was basically fighting for a few months in World War 2. We're supposed to believe he gained all his amazing fighting ability and strategic mind in the matter of a few months? Seriously? They did all that to try and move the greater universe along and get Cap to the modern age so he can be an Avenger, but it sacrifices so much of it's own story it's not even a good movie. Iron Man 2 is another example of what not to do when trying to expand the universe. Iron Man 2's villain, plot, etc. were all sacrificed for the sake of the SHIELD sub plot and introducing future characters. However, Iron Man 3 manages to be very slick when moving the greater universe to it's next point. Shane Black works the elements of the greater universe into the actual plot of the film instead of writing the story first and then later attempting to cram other random elements into it and messing with the story of the standalone. Black makes it work by incorporating the plot of the greater universe into the individual plot of Iron Man 3. How? Well, we know that Ultron is going to be the next Avengers villain. We know that Tony Stark will be the one to create him. In Iron Man 3, Tony has developed a way to remote control the suit. He has also developed a way for the suits to act on their own will, but still under Tony's command. However, we do see instances of the suits acting out of their own intelligence or not following Tony's commands. We saw Jarvis fly Tony to Miami even when he hadn't commanded him to, Jarvis had the flight plan inside him but he hadn't been commanded to take him there. We also see one of the suits attack Extremis Pepper, and even when Iron Man yells at it and tells it to stop it continues the attack. Clear showings of the suits acting out of their own intelligence and will which will lead to the birth of Ultron. Seeing as Tony destroyed all the suits at the end, it's my guess that the artificial life form known as Jarvis isn't gonna be too happy about that. Anyhow, Iron Man 3 moves the greater universe along but doesn't sacrifice it's individual quality.
Overall, after six viewings I have come to love this movie. I love it mostly because of how different and unique it is. But great story, character arcs and action help a lot too. In all objectivity I'd say this is around 8.5/10 as a movie, but people hate it for the same stupid reason they hate the X-Men movies. Because it's not 100% the same as the comics...closeness to the comics doesn't mean bulls**t. Quality filmmaking, now that means a lot. That's all that matters because these are called ADAPTATIONS, you must think of all comic book films as alternate universe versions of the characters. Because in all truth, that is what they are. Obviously Iron Man 3 does have it's cons. Harley annoyed me, humor was a tad over the top. The villain while visually cool, his story was just a rehash of previous Iron Man villains. But all films have issues and none of those are unforgivable.
I understand that a lot of people hate this movie, I respect your opinions and really do see where you are coming from. I am not trying to change anyone else's opinion of Iron Man 3, but I am more stating my own. Thanks for reading my friends!
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