So I finally got a chance to see Iron Man and I have to say that it more than lived up to the hype. It was great. I seriously do think it might have been one of my favorite comic book movies. Ever. Yep, really.
It was near (if not past) the level of Spider-Man 2 and X-Men 2, both of which I consider to be pretty much the tops of the recent genre. If we're looking outside the strict "Big Two" dichotomy, Sin City's up there, as well as other (older) stuff, like The Rocketeer.
I know at this point that I'm a little late to the party, but my exclamation over the bonus scene was almost too loud. I'm psyched that they got who they got, I'm psyched that they're laying the ground work for what could be a great series of movies, and I'm psyched that a lot of people are finally seeing that comic books aren't just for geeks; there's a lot of great story in them.
Robert Downey Jr. was a natural for Tony Stark, as anyone who'd ever looked at an Iron Man comic could have (and did, in some cases) told you from day one. I never understood the haters. I know he's had a lot of trouble in the past, but Downey's pretty consistently been a great actor. Is there anything in the (admittedly) not-Shakesperean-tough role of a comic book character that would trouble him? I think not.
The beginning was probably my favorite part of the movie, though, just based on how true to life it was (obviously IMO). I kept finding myself laughing and leaning over to say, "If Tony Stark existed in our world, this is exactly how he'd act!" I found it not only hilarious, but the sign of a good director. (Full disclaimer: now there's something I was worried about! The guy from "Swingers" directing Iron Man? I didn't believe it. But label me a convert! Favreau is my man!)
The origin was told in a great way, and the inclusion of all the proper elements (even a nod to the Mandarin?) were amazing! Then, when he gets back, I can see how they wanted to introduce this Stane guy in the Ultimate version so badly. Anyone a huge fan of 616 Iron Man? I know enough about him, but don't remember this guy at all from the canon.
The development of the suit was appropriate, and I loved (LOVED LOVED LOVED) all the "genius" touches like talking to his machines, his obsession with cars, etc. The machines taking on a life of their own and (in a way) developing personalities was tres cool.
The supporting cast was sweet, I can't wait for Rhodey to get his War Machine on in the sequels (and yes, that's plural for a reason babies!) and Pepper and Hogan were both acceptable versions of themselves for a semi-novice like myself.
All in all, a fun ride. Go and see it if you haven't.