Why Iron Man 3 is the laziest Iron Man movie yet

Why Iron Man 3 didn't even begin to live up to the hype.

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By Sentry - 5/21/2013


I've had a while to digest Iron Man 3, I've watched it repeated times & I've come to the conclusion that I just wasn't very impressed with Iron Man 3, after leaving the theater initially I felt disappointed but I thought my expectations were just too high so I watched it again but it still felt thoroughly disappointing, I'll try explain what I didn't like & why I didn't like it.

The opening song Blue actually embodies the essence of this movie rather well, silly, simple, slightly fun but rather hollow.

AC/DC has become synonymous with Iron Man, I would have liked at least one AC/DC reference in there somewhere, even in the end credits, to replace the silly Austin Powers style music, I kept expecting to hear a Yeah Baby Yeah! in there somewhere.

The trailers depicted a personal battle with the Mandarin that would push Tony to his absolute limits but the Mandarin wasn't even concerned about Tony at all, the Mandarin wasn't bothered by Tony & didn't particularly care about Tony until Tony provoked him, If Happy hadn't have been so over zealous in his security, he wouldn't have been blown up by accident & Tony never would have challenged the Mandarin in public.

I loved the line from the trailers (but not in the movie) "Do you want an empty life or a meaningful death?", none of the menace from the trailers transferred over into the actual movie & the news clips felt so fake, Paul Verhoeven does them so much better & the constant slide over effect whenever they would change locations made it feel like a bad TV show from the 70's, some really bad editing & effects there.



And the whole "Lesson number one: Heroes, there's no such thing." quote followed by a shot of Tony's mansion being destroyed by missiles, seemed to suggest that Iron Man was being made an example of as a warning to all the other heroes out there but this wasn't the case at all.

Shane Black was all over this, the voice over thing from Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (which I hate), the finale at the docks, the Christmas settings, the sharpshooter Riggs, I mean Rhodey, the banter felt like it was from a Lethal Weapon 5 script except Glover & Gibson have much better chemistry, the helpful kid from The Last Boyscout, I mean, The Last Action Hero, I mean Iron Man 3, the natural born killer, Pepper, from The Long Kiss Goodnight, I mean, Iron Man 3, the constant helicopter attacks from all his movies, the similarities are almost endless.

I really enjoyed Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, the self narrative worked on that film but not for Iron Man 3, it's like the guy has nothing new to offer, he's just rehashing old ideas in different settings.

The first two Iron Man movies were action movies with moments of comedy, Iron Man 3 was a comedy movie with moments of action, the laughs from the first two Iron Man movies came from Tony's personality & wit, he wasn't actually cracking jokes like he does incessantly in Iron Man 3, it was just too much in this one, take the exchange between him & the reporter in the first movie, he was being serious for the most part, slightly facetious but that's where the comedy was, not in his increasingly lame one liners, "That's a limited edition."

Now, the implants, were they so he could control his suit with his mind or were they acting as some sort of guidance beacons for his individual suit parts, I think it was the latter, when the suit is attaching itself to him at the start, he tells Jarvis to slow them down & when the face mask gets knocked upside down, Tony jumps around to match it to his face, which all seems to indicate that he has no real control over them via his mind & if the implants were so he could control the suit with his mind, why did he need 47 of them? Wouldn't 1 implant suffice, 47 seem to indicate that he has these implants all over his body acting as beacons for his suit.

If Tony needed implants for his suit to guide itself on to him, how could he summon the suit onto Pepper & Killian?

I thought the comics handled the extremis story line far better, Tony was dying from a beating an extremis soldier gave him so he injected himself with extremis but before that, he injected some sort of nano technological under armor into his body, which he was only able to survive due to extremis' healing abilities, that is what allowed him to control his suit via his mind, it could only work because of extremis, this would have been a much cooler avenue to explore than some implants which were never really explained at all.

Would I expect the leader of The Avengers (arguably) to have a home defense system of some sort, considering he nuked another world, I would think so, would he, at the very least, after threatening The Mandarin, get Jarvis to station a few sentries around the perimeter, I would think so, would I expect one of the smartest guys on the planet to at least be wearing a battle ready suit, Yes, I would think so.



Jarvis said he was busy because Tony gave his address out to the world but what was Jarvis doing exactly that prevented him from doing anything else of any use, he was watching the front gate, poorly I might add & watching a few news helicopters, also, poorly, aside from that, he wasn't really doing anything, he didn't even give Tony a heads up, Sir, incoming missile detected, nope, nothing. nice one Jarvis.

While the mansion was being destroyed, Tony never once asked Jarvis for help, he never said Jarvis get me a suit, Jarvis send a few suits out here, nothing, he had 40 odd suits mere meters away from him & most of the substantial debris didn't fall until after the fourth or fifth missile struck.



Which brings me to my next point, the debris is a thin excuse, at best, those solid steel doors weren't even dented by that concrete, this is the same concrete that as seen in Iron Man 1, Tony fell through two floors like a lead weight with ease, Jarvis should have been able to open the doors, all the suits were stacked around the sides so any rubble that would have fallen in, wouldn't have hit any suits, not that concrete should be able to damage a suit in the first place.

Even if the doors couldn't open, forty suits couldn't bust their way out? Igor couldn't? the guy with 2 actual jackhammers for arms couldn't find a way out, no, the suits are useless at this point, they are unable to match the technological prowess of a crane.

And this is the same concrete, where almost half the mansion falls on top of Tony at the bottom of the sea & he's able to bust his way through most of that, but then the hand detaches itself & pulls Tony out by his flesh & bones, deciding not to grab onto the actual suit, all of which was done by Jarvis, not by Tony controlling his suit with his mind and Pepper was obviously watching where Tony was dragged into the sea yet for some reason she didn't see him fly away in the Iron Man armor.

A kid can snap off Iron Mans finger? Some people say the suit was designed to come apart, well, the fingers weren't.

I'm still not sure why AIM refitted Iron Patriot, especially after Tony had been so protective & secretive of his technology in the past, I can understand him giving his buddy a suit but to hand it over to another competitor who he seems to know nothing about seems out of character for him & the suit (Iron Patriot) had the same access features that all of Tony's suits had, did AIM do that too or was that Tony?

Seems strange that Killian spent quite a while heating up the suit so much so that it almost killed Rhodey yet when Iron Patriot lands at Air Force One, there's not a mark to be seen on the suit, it's all brand new & are there no clearance checks at all to get on board what is supposed to be the most secure plane in the world?



Also strange that the President seemed to have control over the suit yet he never actually tried to do anything in it, he could get in & out of the suit at the very least, did Rhodey somehow fire the repulsor blast or did the President, I'm not sure but that whole debacle was so ridiculous, Rhodey swinging through the air like Tarzan was laughable.

Jarvis is beginning to take away far too much from Tony Stark, it's almost like Jarvis doesn't even need Tony anymore, Tony can just sit on the couch & say, Jarvis, go do this or that, I would prefer to see Tony rely less on Jarvis & more on himself, even though he did to a certain extent but I'm talking about him as Iron Man.



The extremis soldiers, 3,000 degrees is hotter than magma yet all these guys & girls still have all their clothes on? People say, it's a PG movie, you can't have nudity, that much is obvious, a quick scene detailing Killian or some scientist developing some sort of cloth or uniform for them would have been all that was necessary, the Hulk was butt naked in The Avengers although they didn't show you but why else would the guy give him a pair of pants, some clever camera play with Pepper could have worked with Tony giving her his shirt at the end, many possibilities, no nudity required.

Killian can tear chunks off of Tony's suits yet he grabs a railing & it doesn't burn through or break, that's some pretty serious metal, I didn't realize industrial plants used stronger materials than Iron Man does.

The consistency of the suits was way off, some say they were prototypes although I think only 42 was an actual prototype but still, they were all made out of the same materials & should thus have the same durability as the others, Thor couldn't penetrate Iron Mans armor & he can conjure temperatures exceeding 6 times the surface of the sun yet a puny 3,000 degrees can melt them & tear them to bits.

I thought the special effects for the suits looked fake in this one, in the previous 2 & the Avengers, the suits looked metallic, they looked strong but they looked noticeably different here, someone said it was a different vfx studio, I'm not sure if this is true but it wouldn't surprise me.

Yes, Pepper at the end was totally unbelievable, she has never shown the slightest interest or ability towards fighting & when she is around violence or fighting all she is does is scream & run away, it seems totally unrealistic that she would somehow start doing flips through the air & begin pummeling through Iron Man suits like they were nothing.



Also, why would Killian inject Pepper with extremis? In the comics there was a 97.5% chance of fatality with extremis subjects so if Killian wanted Stark to work for him, injecting Pepper with a substance that's highly likely to kill her might not be the best move, not to mention, if she does survive extremis, Tony now has an extremis enhanced ally.

And as you can probably guess, I didn't like the Mandarin twist, The Mandarin spent his formative years training his body & mind, he was not Gollum, he was a martial arts expert & a formidable enemy for Stark even without his rings & the rings weren't magic, they were alien technology, nothing anymore absurd than what has already happened in Thor & the Avengers before plus I was actually looking forward to seeing Kingsley's performance, how perturbed I was to see him use toilet humor & carry on like a drunken imbecile, he reminded me EXACTLY of Simon from Frasier, they were almost identical in their speech, attitude, demeanor & many other areas, what a shame.



Killian was not the Mandarin, the Mandarin even admits that his body can't take the extremis virus, it will kill him, some people say that we will see the real Mandarin later on, I think we might but that will just negate Iron Man 3, bad move Feige, I never had doubts about him before but now, I'm worried.

I hate to bring politics into movies but the whole America creates its own enemies & produces & fosters fear for control just felt like a not so subtle knock to America about its foreign policy, I bet the truthers & conspiracy theorists were nodding in complete agreement & loved the twist, I thought it was pandering to be honest.

Plus, why wouldn't he take the fight to the sky, where Iron Man clearly has the advantage, why bother going toe to toe with Killian?

Like Lucius Fox said "There's nothing like a little air superiority." amen to that, Stark should know that better than most.

When Killian grabbed Iron Mans hand, all he had to do was grab his other hand & head for the clouds, suffocate him in space, now that would have been cool to see, Tony realizes he can't beat Killian on the ground so he takes it to the air but the thought never occurs to him.

He didn't even think to put a bit of distance between himself & Killian & then unload his full arsenal on him from a distance.



And can anyone explain why Tony looked so worried when that Iron Man helmet rolled out of the fire? When the face popped off, he looked so relieved, what was he so apprehensive about, was he expecting Killian's head to be in there?

Also some people say 42 was special because it could come apart at will but that other armor that looked a lot like a version of the destroyer armor, broke up into 6 different parts & hit the extremis soldiers off the balcony, that suit could apparently come apart & reconnect at will too.

When he initiated clean slate, Igor, who has supporting the crane, must have blown up, yet, the structure remained standing, that's odd.

I was definitely expecting better from Marvel, I still have high hopes for The Dark World but Iron Man 3 was pretty rough effort, in my opinion.

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jessepostal - 5/21/2013, 1:54 PM
Didn't read your article yet, but tony didn't need implants to put the suit on himself, the implants controlled the suit in general.
WYLEEJAY - 5/21/2013, 2:06 PM
Sooooo............did you like it?
BANE5000 - 5/21/2013, 2:11 PM
As for Jarvis not needing Tony anymore...

I always thought that since Tony was experimenting with AI and mind control with his suits that Jarvis would kind of get tired of tony or his programming would be corrupted somehow that he would become more self aware and that Tony, as well as humans, are just a nuisance and takes over a prototype suit of Tony's and become the MCU version of Ultron
brazilianbatman - 5/21/2013, 2:11 PM
the last trailer gave me the impression that iron man 3 was going to be the movie of the year and it probably will be because I don't think any movie will make more than 1.2 billion this year, but I am not talking about box office numbers I am talking about quality.

there were 3 things I dint like about the movie.

-pepper potts being powerful and killing the villain
- Mandarin not being a menacing arch-villain but an actor instead
- too many funny(or unfunny) scenes
BANE5000 - 5/21/2013, 2:15 PM
I bet anything that if they had left out the plot twist and kept The Mandarin as the menacing, threatening, master terrorist he was portrayed as in trailers and commercials...This movie would've been 100 x better and we could've had another awesome CBM villain up there with Ledgers' Joker and Hiddlestons' Loki, IMO :]
brazilianbatman - 5/21/2013, 2:16 PM
Iron Man 4 needs to be a action movie or a real political thriller. Get somebody good with action to direct. If they decide to recast Robert Downey Jr. I would go for Collin Ferrel.
GoILL - 5/21/2013, 2:46 PM
I think i'm just gonna call Iron Man 3 TDKR pt 2 since it's getting the same reaction.
MoonDoggyX - 5/21/2013, 3:46 PM
@Sentry - Calm down, buddy. Breath. Everything you mentioned above is absolutely correct, except about the extremis soldiers heat signatures. They weren't 3000 degrees all the time, just when they went critical and exploded.

That said, I still loved this movie. Flaws and all. It was exciting and entertaining. Your problem, IMHO, is that you expected the movie to be "GOOD" in the first place. You should have just worried about whether you enjoyed the movie as a while. But if you didn't like this movie because of all the things you listed above, then there is NO WAY you could've liked the Avengers or TDKR... or most CBMs for that matter, my friend. Every movie is flawed.

Apparently this movie just didn't gel with you, and that's fine. But make your life a little easier and know that not everything you like has to be good, and everything you don't like has to be bad. Not that I like every movie or even CBM either. Some just don't gel with me. But if you put every movie under this much scrutiny, i don't see how you like any movie ever made. Sometimes you just need to sit back and enjoy the ride...
MoonDoggyX - 5/21/2013, 3:56 PM
I think I kinda lost my point for a second there. What I'm saying in short is...

If you go into this movie, or any, with no expectation of how its supposed to be and just worry about enjoying yourself, then you probably will. At that point, a movie will have to be incredibly bad and/or incompetently made to completely disappoint you.

tonytony - 5/21/2013, 5:05 PM
Great article. So true.
UltimateTypeface - 5/21/2013, 6:08 PM
Needed some superheroes in it.
Avenged99 - 5/22/2013, 9:14 AM

Iron Man 3′: What Should Have Happened…

Posted by FamousMonster via the geeksofdoom.com



Shane Black‘s Iron Man 3 has already grossed over $700 million worldwide, and while a box office success, it isn’t unanimously beloved by critics or audiences like Marvel’s last homerun, Joss Whedon’s The Avengers.

On Rotten Tomatoes, the popular aggregate movie review website, Iron man 3 currently sits at 78% (67% among top critics). On Metacritic, a more analytical aggregate site, Black’s film currently scores 62 out of 100. To put things in perspective, two of 2012′s most divisive blockbuster films amongst fanboys, The Dark Knight Rises and Prometheus, are locked in at 84% and 74% respectively. Iron Man 2, the black sheep of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is at 73%.

In my review, I took issue with misplaced character motivations and the way co-writers Shane Black and Drew Pearce approached Iron Man’s greatest foe, the Mandarin. Well, even after a 1,300-word review, I’m still not finished talking about Iron Man 3. The only way to get over my disappointment with the third (and hopefully final) Iron Man film was to write about how great it could have been if it wasn’t, well, the movie it turned out to be.

So, in an effort to channel the passion and insanity of Patton Oswalt’s epic Star Wars/Avengers rant on NBC’s Parks and Recreation, here are some thoughts on what should have happened in Iron Man 3.


Quick, what were your two favorite things about Joss Whedon’s The Avengers? Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner (the Hulk) and the subsequent banter between Ruffalo and Robert Downey Jr.‘s Tony Stark, right? For me, watching Banner and Stark use their brilliant intellects to brainstorm and work out Loki’s insidious plot was a highlight of the film and something I wanted to see more of in subsequent Marvel films.

Instead of Malibu, Iron Man 3 should have picked up in Manhattan at Stark Tower, referred to as Avengers Tower now thanks to the single A on the side of the building. Tony Stark and Bruce Banner are at work on unlocking the secrets of inter-dimensional travel, wormholes, space aliens – you know, genius stuff.

Meanwhile, overseas, Iron Patriot (Don Cheadle) is fighting a one-man war against The Ten Rings, a terrorist organization using a stockpile of Stark Industries weapons to kill innocents and spread fear. The Ten Rings are lead by a mysterious warlord known as the Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) – a master of deception who sits in the shadows and threatens the American people with Al-Qaeda-like taped messages.



Sounds pretty good so far, right? Iron Patriot busts up a terrorist cell and destroys a stockpile of Stark weapons only to get captured by the Mandarin, whose special powers are glimpsed briefly. The Mandarin releases a video showing James Rhodes held hostage, the Iron Patriot suit dismantled like a cheap plastic plaything. The Mandarin reveals himself, stepping out of the shadows, with a gun pointed to Rhodey’s head. This catches Tony’s attention, who has been consumed with his work at Avengers Tower.

As for Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) and Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau), they’re still around – but they’re not a huge part of this story. They’re back in Malibu, where Pepper is running Stark Industries. Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) and the Extremis storyline could still work here but, in all honesty, I just don’t care about yet another industrialist with a grudge against Tony. Let’s get back to the cool stuff, already.

The Mandarin waxes poetic on the American military-industrial complex and the Iron Patriot, who he compares to Captain America – pure propaganda. The Mandarin considers Patriot a cheap knockoff; he wants the real thing: the Avenger. He challenges Iron Man to reclaim his patriotic puppet. If Stark doesn’t show up in 24 hours, the Mandarin is going to execute Iron Patriot on national television.

To put things in perspective, the events of Iron Man 3 are happening parallel to Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, explaining why the Avengers don’t show up. Banner stays behind at Avengers Tower to continue his research – he offers to help but Tony admits that this is his fight and he’s responsible for The Ten Rings’ rise to power and Rhodey being captured.

Tony suits up in his new Mark 42 armor. There’s a quick glimpse of his vault filled with suits and it’s hinted at that Banner may have helped him create a few for… special circumstances. Tony flies across the world using Jarvis’ navigational abilities and immediately engages the Ten Rings. If you want, throw a few Extremis super soldiers in there – or not – who cares, I’m falling asleep even thinking about plot points from Shane Black’s Iron Man 3.



Anyway, Iron Man is doing sweet-ass Iron Man things like blowing up tanks, destroying weapons stockpiles, using a lot of crazy new gadgets to take out terrorists. Jarvis alerts Tony to a beacon coming from the Iron Patriot suit that leads Iron Man to a compound – a royal palace – where the Mandarin awaits.

Long story short, Tony’s first fight with the Mandarin doesn’t go as planned. This is the first time we really get to see the extent of the Mandarin’s mystical powers, derived from the ten magic rings he wears on his fingers. In the battle, Tony fails to save Rhodey, who is murdered at the hands of the Mandarin. Tony’s suit is blasted beyond repair and Iron Man barely makes it out of there alive.

Let’s be honest, Don Cheadle isn’t a great War Machine/Iron Patriot. Marvel isn’t going to move forward with an Iron Patriot standalone film, and I can’t really see Cheadle suiting up with the Avengers, so why not kill him and have his death actually mean something to Tony’s progression as a character. Killing Rhodes also avoids that lame third act ‘surprise’ where Tony fails to save Pepper Potts, who then reappears as Liquid Magma Super Girl and saves Tony.

Tony Stark makes it to Malibu where he’s nursed back to health by Pepper Potts and Happy Hogan. The Mandarin continues releasing tapes, touting his victory over the Iron Patriot and Tony Stark, the poster boy for capitalism. He promises one more salvo before his ‘teachings’ are complete; he’s going to finish what the Chitauri started by leveling New York City to the ground.

A determined, revenge-obsessed Tony recovers and heads to New York. He shows Banner playback from his helmet of the battle with the Mandarin and the two theorize what sort of energy source is fueling Mandarin’s awesome powers. They determine that it isn’t an arc reactor – that it doesn’t appear to be alien technology – it’s something they’ve never seen before.

Like Marvel slowly folded the cosmic realm into the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Thor, the Mandarin would herald magic and mysticism to an ever-expanding world of unique heroes and villains. By introducing Mandarin and his ten magic rings, Marvel could lay the ground work for a Dr. Strange standalone film and Thanos’ eventual quest for the Infinity Gauntlet.

Look, I don’t have everything worked out, but I know how this theoretical movie ends. There’s a final showdown between Iron Man and the Mandarin in New York City.

Iron Man’s suit is supercharged thanks to some upgrades, but Mandarin’s mystical powers are too much for him. In crowd-pleasing fashion, Bruce Banner “suits up” as THE HULK and they tag-team the Mandarin. Instead of wasting Ruffalo screen time on a throwaway after-credits sequence, give the fans what they want and have Hulk SMASH once more!

When it looks like Mandarin is defeated, he casts a mystical spell on Hulk and takes control of the beast, aiming him like a weapon toward Iron Man.

Hulk comes after Iron Man, who takes off toward Avengers Tower. Hulk jumps and leaps through the city after him and eventually snatches him out of the air. Tony uses every gadget, but none of them can stop the big guy. Hulk throws Tony like a fastball, sending him crashing into Avengers Tower. The Mandarin continues to puppeteer the Hulk, who scales the building (bonus points for a King Kong allusion!) to smash ol’ shell-head to bits.

Here’s the big reveal: Tony emerges from the vault in HULKBUSTER ARMOR! We got a brief glimpse at the heavy-duty suit in Shane Black’s film, but it was a complete waste of pixels after Tony arbitrarily decided to self-destruct all of his suits. In my Iron Man 3, Tony goes toe-to-toe with the Hulk and it’s a knock-down, drag-out brawl.

The fight goes through Avengers Tower, onto rooftops, and eventually back down to street level. Jarvis gives Tony an update on the Mandarin’s location and Tony attempts to push forward towards his arch-nemesis while fighting off the big green rage monster.

Hulk tries to squeeze the life out of Tony and crush the suit, but Tony delivers a crushing blow to the Hulk’s head and gets free, just long enough to get his hands on the Mandarin. In the Hulkbuster armor, Tony grabs Mandarin and crushes his hands, preventing him from using the magic rings. Hulk shakes off the spell and slowly regains self-control, transforming back into Banner.

Mandarin and his magic rings are taken into custody by S.H.I.E.L.D. Tony and Bruce exchange playful banter about the epic brawl they just had. Banner is relieved by how well the Hulkbuster suit worked, while Tony takes the opportunity to ask Banner about his wormhole, inter-dimensional research. Banner says, “Oh yeah, about that…”

After-Credits Scene: Pepper Potts is on the phone with Tony Stark, who’s flying around in the Iron Man suit. They’re making dinner plans and Tony tells Pepper to book the reservation for 7. “On second thought, better make that 7:30.” At this point, we’ve only see Tony’s face, inside the suit, talking to Pepper via the heads-up display in his helmet. The camera cuts to an exhilarating reveal of Tony in all-white DEEP SPACE ARMOR, flying through the cosmos!

Cut. Print. That’s the Iron Man 3 I wanted to see, anyway. Maybe it’s the insane ramblings of a geek, or just glorified fanboy fiction, but I feel better for getting it out of head. Now I can move on and see the rest of this summer’s cinematic offerings which, hopefully, aren’t as disappointing as Shane Black’s ‘splosion-filled spectacle.



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