WRITTEN BY: Shane Black, Drew Pearce
DIRECTED BY: Shane Black
STARRING: Robert Downey Jr, Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce, Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle
RATING: 4 stars
At this point in the Iron Man franchise, it seems Robert Downey Jr can do no wrong. He could do just about anything with the character and everyone would swoon over him. Quite simply, Downey Jr owns Tony Stark so well that it is doubtful anyone could ever step into those shoes again and do it justice. It is greatly due to him and his charisma that this franchise has been such a success. The plot in this third instalment, which has been loosely drawn from the comics, has adapted the story well, while the special effects and cinematography are also to be admired. Iron man 3 is the type of film that basically does everything well and fans of the previous films are sure to love it.
Iron Man 3 begins with a flashback to New Year's Eve in 1999. Iron Man Tony Stark (Downey Jr) is wooing botanist Maya Hansen (Rebecca Hall) when he is approached by Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce) in a hotel. Killian is rejected by Stark and years later joins terrorist The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) for a violent act of revenge. Meanwhile, Stark struggles to deal with the realities of life post his Avengers heroics.
The action sequences in Iron Man 3 are top-notch. Jon Favreau has handed over the directing reins to the very capable hands of Shane Black, who previously worked with Downey Jr in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. Black also co-wrote the screenplay and pulls it all together nicely. The plot is cleverly crafted to provide strong character development of the hero, as he deals with his anxiety and stress after what he experienced in The Avengers.
I have raved on enough about Downey Jr already, but I will add that his delivery of one-liners is spot on and hilarious in this film. Pearce is also a fantastic addition to the cast. He seems to relish playing villainous roles and gives a great performance in Iron Man 3. Paltrow has a bigger and more integral role in the third film as Stark's love interest, Pepper Potts, and she gives a convincing performance. Don Cheadle is also his reliable self as James Rhodes. I had my doubts about Kingsley at first, but by the end of the film, I was completely sold. It is a different type of role for him and he delivers the goods.
This Marvel franchise is one I will never tire of and I hope they keep making more quality superhero action adventure films like it.