Iron Man 2
Iron Man is back, but not quite better than ever. The elements which I loved from the first Iron Man are still there: Stark’s crazy antics, the fun Iron Man action visuals, the witty dialogue banter. I did feel that the chemistry between Stark and Pepper Potts was ebbing slightly, but that’s a minor quibble. Most of the same strengths remain.
The story is also pretty solid as Stark is being pressured to release his technology to the government, while a villain with a past connected to Tony’s own past comes into the picture wielding the very same technology. I was impressed that the new characters, most notably Black Widow, Whiplash, and Hammer, were introduced in ways that made sense to the story rather than simply being thrown into the mix for the sake of it.
Some parts of the plot are pretty contrived, including Whiplash’s plot to infiltrate the race track maintenance team to attack Tony despite the fact that Tony decided to join the race as a spur-of-the-moment impulse. There is also a fight between Iron Man and War Machine in the middle which also seems rather forced.
Mickey Rourke was great as Whiplash and really created a strong villainous presence when he was around. I found Scarlett Johanssen as Black Widow to be rather flat however. (But damn, did she look good…)
Yet the real pitfall of this movie was the occasional awkwardness through some of the dialogue and vaguely defined plotlines. I found most of the Nick Fury scenes to be rather odd and out of place. There’s also a scene on a rooftop near the end which made me cringe from the bad line deliveries and strangely placed quips. I also found the aspect of the story involving Tony Stark’s father and the revelations which came from that to be really ambiguous as though they were just flying by the seat of their pants trying to come up with an explanation that sounded good but had no real meat behind it.
These problems contribute to loosening the otherwise tight story and begin to unravel an otherwise worthy sequel. Yet even though these problems do detract from the film’s quality, it is still an overall enjoyable movie which gets you excited at the right moments. A really fun watch to be sure, even if its not quite as fun as its predecessor.