(This review may contain spoilers, so if you haven’t seen it yet, I suggest skipping this post.)
Phase II of Marvel’s superhero mashup begins proper with Ironman 3, the first of the standalones after the hugely successful ‘Avengers’. Set a few years after the events of New York, Tony Stark gets even more obsessed with his toys, creating more and more advanced Iron Man suits in anticipation of further threats to the world.
In the meantime, a mysterious terrorist going by the name The Mandarin has taken credit for a series of bombings with increasing intensity. When one such attack resulted in critical injuries to Happy Hogan, Stark decides enough is enough, and issues a personal challenge to The Mandarin, who promptly destroys his home.
He barely escapes the attack, and while pursuing The Mandarin, finds clues that leads him to Advanced Idea Mechanics (A.I.M), and its CEO Aldrich Killian, and his research into the Extremis program, an experimental regenerative treatment.
Without his new found superbuddies, Stark can only count on JARVIS, and a precocious little boy Harley to help track down The Mandarin, and figure out his connection to AIM.
Fans of the comic may be outraged by how Shane Black has deftly turned one of the most iconic of Ironman’s foes (You could say The Mandarin was to Ironman what The Joker was to Batman) into a side-show in one of the least expected twists in recent movie history, given the penchant for leaks to happen months before the release.
As for me, I was only acquainted with Ironman from the movies, so I rather enjoyed the reveal, and really thought Sir Ben Kingsley did really well portraying The Mandarin / Trevor Slattery.
Oh, and if you don’t have to pee by the end of the movie, stay for a fun (but ultimately non essential) post-credits scene.
Also, seeing the array of Ironman suits in action was totally worth the price of the ticket!
Next up, Thor: The Dark World
But, to be honest, I’m not impressed with the synopsis.
Set one year after The Avengers, Thor battles to save all the Nine Realms from a mysterious enemy older than the universe itself. A primeval race led by Malekith, who is out for revenge, intends to plunge the universe into darkness. Confronted by an enemy that even Odin and Asgard cannot overcome, Thor must reunite with Jane Foster and set out on a dangerous journey that will force him to make the ultimate sacrifice.
Really? To battle an enemy older than the universe itself, Thor needs to enlist the help of.. Jane Foster?
What, he needs to solve the ultimate physics riddle in order to defeat this evil?