Julie and I don't get out much these days, but last weekend we did have the chance to sneak off to a movie. I had wanted to check out Iron Man and Julie was at least somewhat interested. Before I get to my review, though, let's take a moment to look at the superhero movie genre as a whole.
Superhero movies suck.
Well, at least a very high percentage of them do. Or at least that's my opinion. Here are my four word film reviews of some random hero movies I'm able to recall at the moment. In no particular order:
Spiderman: Kirsten Dunst can't act.
Spiderman II: Tobey Maguire can't act.
Spiderman III: James Franco can't act.
Superman: Be honest. It sucked.
Superman Returns: Dork lifts heavy stuff.
Fantastic Four: Someone paid for this?
Batman Begins: Good riddance Tim Burton.
Daredevil: Wish I were blind.
Hulk: Nolte new Gary Busey?
X-Men: Close yet so far...
X2: More Rebecca Romijn please.
X3: Where's Cliff and Woody?
I don't know if there is a movie genre that has collectively sucked so much, yet brought in so much money. The revenue to suckiness ratio of these films is off the chart.
All that being said, I really liked Iron Man. I don't think it's quite as amazing as most people are making it out to be, but it was at least worth the price of admission. I'm not a big Downey Jr. fan, but he was definitely the right casting choice as Tony Stark (since he was practically playing himself). The effects were well done and for the most part the dialogue didn't seem as forced as is typically seen in this fare. It should be pointed out, though, that some of the best scenes in the movie were when Downey was interacting with his non-human costars. Is it sad that one of the better actors/scene stealers was a soulless assembly line robot that could have come straight from a GM plant? On the human side of things, Gwyneth Paltrow was surprisingly palatable throughout 80% of the film and Jeff Bridges didn't blow it either. There were plenty of flaws, but at times it managed to be pretty kick ass, which, honestly, is what I'm really looking for in my superhero indulgences. I give it four out of five stars.
So the first attempt of the year was pretty good. Unfortunately, the law of averages suggests I shouldn't get my hopes up for Indy, Hulk and Batman later this summer. The odds are stacked against them.