Finally, I got to watch the second installment of the Iron Man series. I’ve gone over several websites and was pleased to discover that overall, the movie received positive reviews. That fact assured me that this isn’t a follow-up blockbuster dud. Which isn’t to say that I wouldn’t watch this if critics previewed this negatively; I will definitely watch this movie even if they didn’t like it.
What made me want to see this sequel was the outcome of the first installment. Because the first was a success, I wanted to see what the producers will think of next. Expectations were definitely high for the second movie, and it’s comforting to know that it hits the right spot.
The First Iron Man Movie
I clearly remember watching Iron Man back in 2008. I was in the middle of a review class for my Nurses’ Licensure Examinations (NLE) when I just felt bored (!). With that, I plotted to go to the movies after the review class and have a good time.
I’ve read about Iron Man beforehand, most especially on its lead actor, Robert Downey, Jr. I’ve read about his drug-addiction and his struggles in Hollywood and how the first Iron Man movie was his ticket to redemption. “So there’s an interesting angle behind the protagonist’s actor—let’s see if he delivers,” I thought.
So there I was: In the cinema watching a flick about a lesser-known superhero. A few minutes into the flick and I was already drawn in. I got attached to the film because of its early tear-jerker moment wherein Stark was about to escape from his captives together with fellow scientist, Dr. Yinsen. However, Yinsen was badly wounded that he dies before he gets a chance to escape. In his dying scene, both Stark and Yinsen engaged in the dialogue that endeared me to Iron Man:
Tony Stark: [To a dying Yinsen, as he attempts a breakout] We gotta go. Come on, move with me. We have a plan, and we’re going to stick to it.
Yinsen: This was always the plan, Stark.
Stark: Come on, you’re going to go see your family. Get up.
Yinsen: My family is dead, Stark. And I’m going to see them now. [sees Tony is upset] It’s okay. I want this. I want this.
Stark: Thank you for saving me.
Yinsen: Don’t waste it. Don’t waste your life, Stark. [dies]
I loved its combination of comedic dialogues, superhero action scenes, and portrayal of human drama. Unlike other superhero flicks, this movie appealed to me up to the point where I easily sympathized with the protagonist. Iron Man immediately became one of my favorite superheroes, along with Spider-Man.
The Second Movie: From Circle to Triangle
The follow-up to the 2008 maintains and succeeds with the same formula—a superhero side, representation of human nature, and a witty script!
Tony, remember, I got my eye on you.
—Nick Fury while wearing his eye-patch
Like in the first movie, it was a fun ride; only, this sequel had more drama elements in a single scene that almost made me want to skip to the next. These scenes weren’t boring though, just subtly irrelevant. But even so, it effectively delivers a story while controlling the use of CGIs so as not to shroud good acting.
I would say that the first movie is more fun than this one. I guess that’s what’s expected of sequels that start off from twists in their first movies. In the first movie, Tony Stark reveals himself as Iron Man in the end. In this sequel, he deals with the pressure that comes with his confession; thus, more drama and personal struggles. At least, Stark retains this side of humanity—although we become strong, powerful, and entirely renewed, the problems still keep on coming, and we will have to come up with new ways to cope.
This sequel has a tear-jerker moment, just like in the first movie, found almost in the middle of the film. It’s a father-son moment, one of which I easily identified with. In it, Stark discovers that his dad had earlier blueprints for an arc reactor but was limited by his time’s technology. Stark was feeling empty because he never really felt his father’s love. But then, his father, Howard Stark (through an old video reel) uttered the words that brought me to tears:
What is, and always will be, my greatest creation, is you.
—Howard Stark in a 1974 video reel left for his son
Anyhow, it’s amazing how an internationally unfamiliar superhero from the past can gain a massive following in today’s media. Oh, I’ve heard of Iron Man as a kid but he wasn’t very popular as Spider-Man, Batman, and Superman back then. Actually, as a kid, I thought that he was a superhero robot and not as a human being encased in a technologically advanced exoskeleton.
As in most of Marvel’s movies, cameos are a part of their filming. We see Stan Lee during the Stark Expo being mistaken by Tony Stark as Larry King. Newscasters Christiane Amanpour and Bill O’Reilly appear as themselves. The movie’s director, Jon Favreau also plays his role as Happy Hogan, the bodyguard and chauffeur of Tony Stark.
Humans aren’t just the only ones who make cameos in the movie. We also get to see two prominent items from the world of Marvel superheroes. The first is the hammer of Thor, the Mjolnir. Actually, this item is revealed in the post-credits footage, along with a subtle sound of thunder.
The second, and I believe, the less-noticed item cameo, was that of Captain America’s shield. It was revealed half-finished in the scene when Tony Stark was creating a new element for the arc reactor. Agent Phil Coulson was also in the scene, where he was asked by Stark to find an object to hold a vacuum tube in place. Said object was the shield.
I must say, Scarlett Johansson (as Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff) and Gwyneth Paltrow (as Virginia “Pepper” Potts) make for a smoking combination. It was definitely a pleasure watching both ladies on the big screen together.
Actually, for a minute there, I thought they were going to lock their tongues. (Would’ve been more pleasurable!)
Tony Stark is one lucky bastard! He’s rich, he’s famous, he’s got cool gadgets, and he gets the girls without even trying. I’m reminded of the quote,
In this country, you gotta make the money first. Then when you get the money, you get the power. Then when you get the power, then you get the women.
—Tony Montana, from the 1983 movie, Scarface
Take note: Stark and Montana share the same first name.
I find the film sexy because of the image portrayed by Johansson. I saw her in Scoop, The Prestige, and The Nanny Diaries and doubted if she would fit in as a superhero.
It actually turned out to be a great opening for her career! The sexy curves, the body-hugging black suit, and her beastly moves. She is definitely my kind of girl: Strong in mind and body, mysterious, and fiercely intelligent. No doubt, she will be up there with other movie hotties such as Megan Fox and Kim Kardashian.
- Iron Man Quoted Dialogue: Iron Man (film) – Wikiquote [http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Iron_Man_%28film%29]
- Iron Man 2 Quotes: ‘Iron Man 2’ Best Quotes and Quips [http://insidemovies.moviefone.com/2010/05/10/iron-man-2-best-quotes/]
- Scarface Quote: Scarface (1983) – Memorable quotes [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0086250/quotes]
- Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff: Iron Man 2 | Trailer & Official Movie Site | Now Playing [http://ironmanmovie.marvel.com/#/downloads]