(5/5) super-hero, sc-fi, action, comedy
Iron Man (2008) is as good as super-hero movies get. Up there with Spiderman (2002) (IMDb) and Batman Begins (2005). It is a visual, dramatic and comedic treat, worthy of several Oscar nominations, possibly even a Best Picture nomination.
Prior to Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr. had not made a movie equal to his talents – though very good in both Chaplin (1992) and Zodiac (2007). Ironically, his previous inability to control his drug addiction (single handedly torpedoing the admittedly declining Alley McBeal TV series), combined with his undeniable acting talent made him perfectly suited to play the eccentric, alcoholic, playboy, munitions magnate Tony Stark.
Gwyneth Paltrow gives her best performance since her Oscar winning performance in Shakespeare in Love (1998) (she was also very good in the under appreciated Sky Captain and the World Tomorrow (2004) ). As usual, Jeff Bridges provides a terrific supporting performance. Terrence Howard’s portrayal of a U.S. military commander was the only mediocre performance of the bunch.
Director Jon Favreau (who also appears in a minor role) was unknown to me. The only movie he made that I had previously seen was Elf (2003) (one of the few Will Ferrell movies I’ve enjoyed). His work in Iron Man was, well, fantastic. His comedic touch made me laugh throughout. I’m looking forward to his future work.
If you are a super-hero movie fan, this is a must see film.
Tip: An interesting reveal is held back until after the credits have rolled.