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The Road to Civil War — Iron Man 2

Tony Stark is back! Jon Faveau is gonna kick-ass directing the sequel to Marvel’s beautiful blossom into the cinematic universe! Mickey Rourke is playing Ivan Vanko, a real villain!

… right?

Well, mostly wrong.

“Iron Man 2” released two years after it’s predecessor, which was widely successful and set a high expectation in the minds or critics and fans.

After Stark proclaims “I am Iron Man” to a room full of reporters and, presumably, the world while chomping on a Burger King whopper that may taste as bad as “Iron Man 2” is, people took notice — bad people took notice.

Ivan Vanko, or Whiplash, is set to task by his dying father to build an arc reactor, similar to Stark’s, thanks to blueprints with Ivan’s father’s name and Howard Stark’s printed on the layout.

Give bad people power and they’ll continue to do bad things, like ruin Tony Stark’s Formula 1 debut.

I started having a hard time believing Rourke’s role since the infamous crying scene as his father died in his arms. I didn’t doubt at the time the strength of his character — he swings electric whips around that can tear through vehicles — I doubted how he portrayed the antagonist.

It felt forced. Nothing flowed and nothing made the viewer feel extreme distaste for the villain. So, the Marvel villain curse continues with “Iron Man 2.”

A new face sprung on the scene with this sequel. Don Cheadle, a veteran actor, takes over the place of Stark’s main squeeze, Lt. Col. James Rhodes. Actor Terrence Howard was reportedly unhappy with his contract, pleading for more dollars which undoubtably ticked-off Marvel executives, who replaced him.

Cheadle outperforms Howard in every capacity and is my favorite part of “Iron Man 2.” I love his charisma and comedic timing. There’s playful back-and-forth between him and Stark that makes this movie feel good at times. I loved Cheadle owning the War Machine suit, as well. The banter gets an A-plus from me.

This film is weighed down by unnecessary filler, though. Vanko never seemed to click, as much as Faveau tried to shove Whiplash-centered scenes down our throats.

The biggest crime was the party scene, where Rhodes aims to stop Stark, who’s a belligerent drunk in an Iron Man suit. Horrible, cringe-worthy and paused the storyline for … what, exactly? To show that Stark is going out of his mind due to the oh-so horrible Vanko? I doubt it.

Sam Rockwell was welcoming in his role as rich scientist Justin Hammer who tries to throw money at Vanko for a robot army.

Spoiler: It was unsuccessful.

“Iron Man 2″‘s final fight was OK. It was pretty. That’s all I’ve got because by the end of the film, no suspense or tension was built.

The movie was Faveau’s last work with the Iron Man franchise and Marvel Studios. It felt like he was out of ideas towards the end of the film, anyways. Although, I tend to lean towards him leaving due to not having much creative control. Marvel Studios is as guilty as any other studio with dipping their hands into projects.

This was the first Marvel film that created a tiny cloud of doubt for the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Sure, “The Incredible Hulk” wasn’t great, but Iron Man? How could you muddle an Iron Man film?

It seems slapping Marvel in front of a film doesn’t cure everything, after all.



3 thoughts on “The Road to Civil War — Iron Man 2

  1. Pingback: The Road to Civil War – The Avengers Review | Reflections of the Screen

  2. Pingback: Holland confirms Parker made an appearance years ago in the MCU | Reflect the Screen

  3. Pingback: Where Homecoming ranks in the MCU | Reflect the Screen

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