Posts Tagged ‘Iron Man 2’


New_Iron_man_2_Wallpaper_by_Masterle247When we last saw Iron Man he had a perfectly functioning palladium mechanical heart and a best friend who looked a lot like Terrence Howard. How times have changed. In “Iron Man 2” a mysterious malady is threatening to sideline his success and Jim Rhodes, his BFF, now looks like Don Cheadle.

In the time since the previous “Iron Man” movie, (two years in real time, six months in the story) oddball weapons inventor Tony Stark (Downey Jr.) has become a national hero. He’s one part Bono, two parts George Patton. His technologies, including the famous heavy metal suit, are keeping America safe, but not everyone are fans. The US Senate—in particular Senator Stern (Garry Shandling)—sees the egomaniacal inventor as a threat and wants him to hand over his secrets. Then there is his rival, Justin Hammer (Sam Rockwell, the best actor out there who isn’t a major movie star), an unctuous arms dealer working for the government. He can best be described as a Stark wannabe whose technology is nowhere near as advanced as Stark’s. Even worse is Ivan Vanko aka Whiplash (Mickey Rourke), a Russia engineer whose father used to work with Stark’s old man. The weathered looking Vanko Jr. has built his own suit, this one equipped with whip-like attachments that harness electrical energy. As if that weren’t enough bad guys, even Bill O’Reilly makes a cameo.

Worst of all, though, Stark’s own technology may be working against him. It appears he is slowly being poisoned by the palladium that powers the miniature arc reactor in his chest.

On the plus side there’s loyal old Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) Stark’s Louboutin-sporting confidant who is now CEO of Stark Industries and Natalie Rushman (Scarlett Johansson) Stark’s new assistant. She’s also a S.H.I.E.L.D. (if you sat through the credits of the first film you’ll remember S.H.I.E.L.D. as the fictional espionage and law-enforcement agency run by Nick Fury, played by Samuel L. Jackson) undercover agent named Black Widow who wears tight leather outfits and shows an until now unseen capacity for gymnastics.

There’s more plot and characters, but I’m almost out of space and haven’t gotten to the review yet and that is part of the problem with the movie. The first “Iron Man” was as clean and concise as a huge summer comic book blockbuster can be—solid characters, not too many of them, and a clear cut story. This time around the director Jon Favreau has thrown simplicity out the window, opting instead for Michael Bay style bombast. Where the first “Iron Man” was an idiosyncratic character study with cool action sprinkled throughout, the new one reverses that formula, relying on action to carry the day.

The characters are still fairly strong, but Downey’s charm seems to have faded a bit since he last wore the iron suit. Maybe we got to know him too well two years ago, but here the character doesn’t have the same kind of fresh appeal he had the first time around.

Perhaps it’s because the overall tone of the film is darker, but “Iron Man 2” isn’t as much fun as the original. It should please comic fans familiar with the storyline and characters, and it certainly has its moments—things go boom and Rourke is a convincing, if underused villain—but like the “Spider Man” movies, which got bigger, but not necessarily better as time went on, “Iron Man 2” feels a bit leaden. Leaden or not, though, this will be the biggest hit this summer NOT in 3D.

Is that Alfred Hitchcock in a dress? In Focus by Richard Crouse METRO CANADA May 07, 2010

birds-hitchcock-cameoIron Man 2 director Jon Favreau says the reason he cast himself in the role of Tony Stark’s bodyguard Happy Hogan is “me being selfish and me wanting to be an actor in it.”

One of his cast mates, however, thinks there might be an alternate reason. Gwyneth Paltrow, who plays Pepper Potts for the second time around in this weekend’s Iron Man sequel, wonders if Favreau has a secret crush on her. You see, in the comic book series the film is based on, Hogan and Potts become a romantic item.

“He marries this character in the comic book,” she says, “so you never know. We’ll see! If he wants to make out…”

Whatever the reason, many directors make a regular habit of placing themselves in their movies.

Alfred Hitchcock honed the art of the cameo to a science, turning up in 41 of his films.

Usually his appearances were limited to a quick hit, sometimes just as a silhouette, often as a face in the crowd, but a careful study of his films reveals the clever ways he inserted himself into the story.

The strangest cameo is one that may never have happened. In North by Northwest, Hitch can be seen missing a bus during the opening credits but fans claim there is a second cameo later in the film.

Forty-four minutes in, there is a scene with a woman in a dress speaking to the police on a train, a woman rumoured to be the director in drag.

Hitchcock was so well known for his sneaky appearances in films he even made one following his death. In Psycho II, made three years after his passing, his famous silhouette can be seen in shadow just outside of Mother’s bedroom.

The portly British director had the art of the cameo down to a science, but he’s not the only one. The usually reclusive Terrence Malick plays an unexpected visitor a thet door, credited as Caller at Rich Man’s House in his masterpiece, Badlands, and Oliver Stone can be glimpsed as the officer with a phone at the U.S. base’s bunker when it is blown up in Platoon.

One of the most memorable but unrecognizable director cameos comes in Alien. When John Hurt looks into a transparent egg, the facehugger was “played” by director Ridley Scott’s gloved hands.