IRON MAN 3

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IRON MAN 3 - 2013
USA Release: May 3, 2013
Paramount
Rated: USA: PG-13

What if, instead of Bob Parr and his life being destroyed by a brilliant narcissistic inventor from his past like Buddy Pine (who carries a grudge because Mr. Incredible gave him the big Brush-Off), we had Tony Stark and his life being destroyed by a brilliant narcissistic inventor from his past like Aldrich Killian (who carries a grudge because Mr. Incredible, Tony Stark gave him the big Brush-Off)?

We'd have IRON MAN 3!

Really?

Seriously!

In IRON MAN 3, we start with a voice-over by Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.: IN DREAMS, GOTHIKA, IRON MAN [all], SHERLOCK HOLMES, THE AVENGERS) who realizes that he created a demon in his past. One that he had no clue about having created because he was too busy at the time being Tony Stark.

But now it's a new millennium and Tony has relatively settled down with Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow: THE TALENTED MR. RIPLEY, SE7EN, SKY CAPTAIN, THE AVENGERS). So when a new terrorist starts terrorizing and rendering the U.S. President (William Sadler: TALES FROM THE CRYPT: DEMON KNIGHT, BORDELLO OF BLOOD, DISTURBING BEHAVIOR, THE GREEN MILE, THE MIST) and his administration impotent, Tony utters a wholesale stupid dare so confoundingly ridiculous that you actually want to see Tony get his ass handed to him by said bad guy.

That happens, Tony realizes that he has - yet again - allowed his ego to overrule his genius, and with this new insight is reminded - yet again - of the value in having a Secret Identity!

So what does this terrorist, The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley: SLIPSTREAM, SPECIES, A SOUND OF THUNDER, SHUTTER ISLAND), do? You'd be surprised.

What does the other bad guy, Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce: RAVENOUS, MEMENTO, THE HURT LOCKER, PROMETHEUS), who is apparently assisting The Mandarin, do? He's invented this genetic ... well I can't call it a cure or anything else positive, so I'll just call it stuff.

Aldrich, fuming for the last 15 years or so because he lost in a childishly petty battle of egos with Tony, is pursuing a Scorched-earth style revenge and he doesn't care who gets in the way and dies for it.

So what does Aldrich's genetic stuff do? It turns people into living breathing Black Snake fireworks!

This is so profoundly ridiculous that I won't even go into a !!!SCIENCE MOMENT!!! over it. But between writer Drew Pearce and writer / director Shane Black, somebody must have realized that this invention was so absurd that they added a weak caveat:
You turn people into Black Snake fireworks?!?
Aldrich: Well, not alone. I had help from Tony Stark's ex-lover, Maya (Rebecca Hall: THE PRESTIGE).
But ... you turn people into Black Snake fireworks?!?
Aldrich: (cough!) Well, yes. But the point is to help those who have lost their limbs regenerate new ones.
By turning them into Black Snake fireworks?!?
Aldrich: Ahem. Ah... well, it IS a bit unstable... er...
That's no excuse!
Aldrich: Being a Black Snake firework also makes you super strong!
Oh shut up!

Yes, IRON MAN 3 is sublimely preposterous. Director Jon Favreau was wise enough to jump ship for this one and, fortunately, at no point in the script by writer Drew Pierce and writer / director Shane Black, does it take itself too seriously. And while the merciless Mandarin strikes death with seeming impunity and no fear, such serious scenes are quickly overcome by Pepper Potts' perpetual perkiness and Stark's sundry snark. This movie is facepalm stupid but it's funny enough, and entertaining enough, to be enjoyable.

Don Cheadle (IRON MAN 2) as Colonel James Rhodes is just there: Not really more than that. Paul Bettany (IRON MAN [all], THE AVENGERS) as the voice of Jarvis has a bigger role, but hey! As long as they pay, right?

If you feel humor alone cannot forgive such an otherwise head-smackingly stupid movie (my favorite part is where a henchman says and does exactly what a henchman should say and do in his situation!), you can always watch THE INCREDIBLES. It was both smart AND funny! Which is why we gave it five Shriek Girls.

IRON MAN 3 is just funny, which is why it gets three Shriek Girls. Also, with scripts like this, Robert Downey Jr. earns every penny they pay him.

Shriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek Girls
This review copyright 2013 E.C.McMullen Jr.

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