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Snackula's Review

Created Jul 31, 2010 08:57PM PST • Edited Jul 31, 2010 08:57PM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Good 3.0

    The first Iron Man was one of the best Superhero films of the last ten years, perhaps only bested by the Dark Knight and, possibly, X-Men 2. The new entry, Iron Man 2, had so much potential to meet or exceed its predecessors, the anticipation was almost unbearable. Now that the sequel has landed…well…save the anticipation for Iron Man 3, Captain America, Thor,The Avengers, etc.

    While Iron Man 2 does have a few “whoa” moments, it simply does not meet the standard of storytelling set by the first Iron Man. The fault mostly lays with screenwriter Justin Theroux, whose attention to details such as dialogue, set up and payoff, character development, foreshadowing, and plot points, is suspect to say the least. This is truly one of the worst written Superhero films I’ve ever seen. The story was not compelling, the dialogue not memorable, and the characters not engaging. I hope I’m being clear about my opinion of the script.

    While it would be simple enough, and justified, to blame only the script for the film’s shortcomings, a good portion of finger pointing can be leveled at director Jon Favreau. It’s a big surprise that the film comes off as uninspired as it does, given what a great job Favreau did with the first film. But the rambling dialogue/improve feel of some scenes, and abrupt transitional scenes lay squarely on the shoulders of the director. So does the uneven pacing, bombastic action sequences, and sometimes lazy film making. There are a few style points, but the film never really raises itself above the level of “could’ve been great”.

  3. Good 3.0

    The one truly redeeming factor of the film is Robert Downey Jr. While there is some rather unremarkable dialogue, again that’s the fault of the script not the actors, Downey does own his character throughout and makes the most out of he what has to work with. He is always compelling to watch, and manages to bring depth to Tony Stark whenever possible. There are two moments for me where Tony Stark was not the Tony Stark from the first film which, again, is the fault of the script. But Downey pulls it together as the film goes on, and we are given back the Tony we knew before.

    Mickey Rourke is also quite good as Ivan Vanko, aka “Whiplash”. He brings the right amount of villainous energy to his scenes, and adds nice shades of brooding, as needed.

    The rest of the players do well enough, though no one gets nearly enough development. Especially Gwenyth Paltrow as Pepper Potts. She really doesn’t have much to do, and looks bored doing it. The two Tony/Pepper scenes are well played, but that’s about all the acting she gets to do. Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury comes off as a little whiny and catty, and not the assured leader of the Avenger Program. Don Cheadle clearly didn’t have time to work on his character. His James Rhodes is the equivalent of “well-intentioned concerned on-looker” in a higher profile role. Cheadle is too good an actor not to be given the benefit of the doubt. I believe the script handicapped his performance.

  4. Male Stars Good 3.0
  5. Female Stars Good 3.0
  6. Female Costars Good 3.0
  7. Male Costars Good 3.0
  8. OK 2.5

    The film is not as tightly produced as the first film. There are a few effects that feel incomplete, and some of the location shots feel confined. While an effort was made for a specific look to the film, it doesn’t feel like they pulled out all the stops. Especially towards the end when the film becomes bombastic and harried.

  9. Direction OK 2.5
  10. Play OK 2.5
  11. Music OK 2.5
  12. Visuals OK 2.5
  13. Content
  14. Sordid 2.7
  15. Sex Titillating 2.1
  16. Violence Brutal 3.4
  17. Rudeness Salty 2.5
  18. Surreal 3.0
  19. Circumstantial Surreal 3.0
  20. Biological Surreal 3.0
  21. Physical Surreal 3.0


Subscribe to Iron Man 2 7 replies, 3 voices
Aug 1, 2010 1:39AM

Regarding Snackula’s Review
Tough but fair, Snackula, and especially well argued.

May 22, 2010 10:08PM

Regarding SnowMan’s Review
“As an aside, now that the real Senator Specter from PA lost his primary bid, do they have to recast that role?” Good one.

May 17, 2010 8:51AM

I agree with brien sez.. lol.. but that would be interesting wick. not to say that it would be the best.. but you never know, right?