A boy and dad passion for action figures.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Boys having fun...

It is now a tradition for Isaac and I that the day a new Marvel film comes out at the cinema we take the day off and go. Iron Man 3 was the next one... one that we really really wanted to see!

For the occasion, Isaac dressed up as Iron Isaac. Here he is in front of the cinema. We went to see the film twice the same day. First on 3D and then regular. Between representations we had some time to kill...

Ah! Monster University. Isaac can't wait for this one.

Nothing is as fun as blowing up someone with your lazer arm! And below Isaac is playing some House of the Dead video game!

Here's my personal review on Iron Man 3:

Following last year mega hit THE AVENGERS, the Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase 2 began last weekend with IRON MAN 3. Robert Downey Jr. returns as Tony Stark, the billionaire playboy, industrialist and ingenious engineer who happens to be Iron Man.

After the events of New York, Stark is not the same anymore. He can't seem to get his life back and soon everything around him goes down… including his own self.

Like the first IRON MAN film, this sequel is based on the Extremist comics. In the first film, the story arc incorporates an updated origin for Iron Man. Tony Stark is a weapons designer whose weapons are being used against Al Qaeda in Afghanistan prior to the first Gulf War. During an inspection tour, one of Stark's own bombs detonates, sending a piece of shrapnel into his chest, nearly killing him. He is then captured by Afghan terrorists. As with the original origin story, Tony creates the armor with Dr. Ho Yinsen (who quickly appears AGAIN in IRON MAN 3) and escapes the terrorists.

The Mandarin is referenced in the 2008 live action IRON MAN movie via the name of the terrorist group called "The Ten Rings", who holds Tony Stark captive in the beginning of the film. Raza, the leader of the Ten Rings, has a single red ring that he rubs with his other hand. He also makes a reference to Genghis Khan when speaking to Stark and Yinsen.

Also in IRON MAN 2, a Ten Rings operative goes to Russia to assist Ivan Vanko in his vendetta against Tony Stark. When he is arrested in Monaco after his first confrontation with Stark, The Ten Rings and Justin Hammer break Vanko out of prison.

In IRON MAN 2, a small plot arc of the Extremis story involves Tony trying to find a solution to the palladium poisoning from his Iron Man arc reactor, eventually coming to creating a new element for a pacemaker resembling Extremis armor.

Extremis is a military nanotechnology serum, an attempt to recreate the Super-Soldier Serum, which interfaces with the brain's 'repair center' and directs the body to rebuild itself from scratch as if it were all wound tissue to be replaced. The design for the new body is programmable prior to injection and can involve superhuman abilities, giving it an (untested) military application.


Back to IRON MAN 3. Iron Man's famous nemesis The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) is introduced. For fans of the comics this was the moment we were waiting for… and what a disappointment it turned out to be.

Here's the Mandarin's implication in the comic book storyline. The Mandarin somehow infiltrates the U.S. government via his role as CEO of Prometheus, a corporation specializing in bio-engineered weaponry (changed to A.I.M in the film). He appears to be using Extremis creator Aldrich Killian and Tony Stark's former love interest Maya Hansen (Guy Pearce and Rebecca Hall respectively in the film) to produce an army of Extremis enhanced soldiers as well as financing and arming terrorists around the globe. The Mandarin also appears to plan unleashing the Extremis virus in aerosol form on the public, expecting the 97.5% fatality ratio to cause a mass catastrophe of deaths.

In the IRON MAN 3 film, things aren't exactly the same, which is fine with me but what really make it frustrating here was the treatment given to the Mandarin. In the film the Mandarin is turned into the media-saturated, perception-is-reality 21st Century bad guy. The Mandarin doesn't really exist. He is a decoy. An illusion. Most might not remember but we got the exact same insulting treatment in BATMAN BEGIN when Ra's Al-Ghul (Ken Watanabe) is not the character we are presented.

As for Mandarin, whats wrong with the Ten Rings and their magical power?! What's wrong with him use magical elements? What's wrong with him being Asian? NOTHING. Yet they fucked up it badly.

As for the rest IRON MAN 3 is a good film. It is another Shane Black film set during Christmas. Its well written, witty, self-referential but it is also the least superhero film of the Marvel films so far. Don't get me wrong, I love Tony Stark but I wanted to see more Iron Man.

Guy Pearce gives a great performance as a now more vicious, ruthless and suave Aldrich Killian. Aldrich Killian heads a brain-trust organization called A.I.M. (in the comics, A.I.M. create the Cosmic Cube also known as the Tesseract in the live action films) that is developing Extremis, which is something that taps into human DNA and is able to reprogram it and regenerate limbs and enhance strength and cure wounds. But it also could change the whole world, which is what Killian intends to do with it.

Sadly Don Cheadle is not giving much to do either as War Machine… oups, Iron Patriot. Dear lord, why they changed him to Iron Patriot?! Don't they know that it is Norman Osborn who becomes the Iron Patriot! And finally the less said about Gwyneth Paltrow, the better. She probably wore the Iron Man suits just as much as Downey did, a shame.

But I still liked IRON MAN 3. Isaac and I had lots of film seeing it twice back to back on opening day and we can't wait for the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase 2 films.


  1. I had to avoid reading this as I have not seen it yet. I am awaiting the DVD.

    1. Yes don't read my review, SPOILERS!

    2. I've added a SPOILERS warning!

  2. Wow, very informative. I've seen the movie, but have not read many Iron Man comics.