A Review From A Former MCU Hater:
I have seen this movie before (around 2009 in fact) and I liked it. For a few short years I casually watched a few more of the Marvel films here and there. But by the time Winter Soldier came out, I was sick to death of the MCU, the rabid fans, the media hype, the constant advertising, so much so thay I decided to just cut these movies out for good!
Well, it's now 2018 (barely, I know, but still) and I've avoided nearly every MCU movie released so far. And yet, for several months now a desire to finally catch up with this franchise has grown. I have seen (by choice) trailers for recent movies, admired the really awesome poster art, been mesmerized and stunned by images and screenshots from a few of the movies I have missed (Ragnorok in particular took my breath away from the stills I saw), and now I just feel so ready to start over with this beloved franchise. So, a few days before Christmas, I treated myself to the recent Phase One and Phase Two box sets (on Bluray) and have made it my goal to watch every single MCU movie in the run up to Infinity War: Endgame (totally aware that I am one of only three people in history to have never Infinity War).
So, naturally, I begin my journey with Iron Man. Like I said, I remember enjoying this one a fair bit, but it has been so long since I last saw it (and I think I only watched this twice), that watching it again this evening felt like the first time. And it was EXCELLENT!
Perfect casting, terrific plot, great character depth (Downey and Paltrow really have great chemistry), and the action sequences were really effective. What surprised me was the attention to small nuances of personality and body language, as I was happy to note that Iron Man was a far more character driven affair than I remembered. Also, to my delight, the action scenes were not dramatically OTT (at least not until the end), which is particularly noteworthy considering I recall the first Avengers movie to be crowded with noisy scenes (by that point I was sick of the whole MCU concept).
But with all the praise I am giving this, was it the greatest movie I have ever seen? Well, no. For starters I noticed a few strange mistakes. When Stark is messing around with the suit, it shoots up and he slams into a wall. No injuries. No helmet. It works because it's funny but...yeah, it did slightly jar with the often more serious tone (but the comedic moments do shine in this film, I must say). Then, towards the end in the climactic battle between two suits- both of which are supposed to be pretty close to indestructible- each falls from the sky only to crash land and find themselves in a state of very little real damage. Only then do we see the strongest suit pick up a piece of the smaller suit and crush it in his hand like cardboard.
But this is a movie. These aren't terrible moments, just little forgivable goofs.
Also, at times the pacing seemed a little off. I did find my mind wondering a little around the middle but by the end of the movie I was absolutely engrossed and enthralled.
Overall, this is one of the finest Hollywood action movies I have ever seen. I am so glad I have given Iron Man and the MCU another shot, and am even more eager now to continue. Up next: I have never seen The Incredible Hulk before. Wish me luck!
Now as my memory serves me, I loathed Iron Man 2, but I really loved Captain America: The First Avenger (currently my absolute favourite) and I enjoyed Thor. As for Avengers Assemble...I got bored of the franchise hype by that point (as I said before) and it really jaded me to whatever value that movie has. I hated it when it came out but I am ready to try it again.
So yeah, Phase One has started and I am one movie down!
I am trying hard to rate this movie correctly. It's either an 8 or a 9/10. It is so strong but it's not quite the perfect movie.
I will be kind and give it:
My profile on Letterboxd https://letterboxd.com/SegueMyles
Edited by Segue Myles, 24 December 2018 - 10:23 PM.