Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I Am Iron Man

Do you know what a Repulsor Ray is? If not, ask a ten year old boy. He may or may not know. Then go ask any guy over 30; your brother, boyfriend, co-worker… any adult American male between 30 and let’s say 45. Chances are he’ll know.

Repulsor Rays are the power beams that shoot out of Iron Man’s gloves. I know this because my generation grew up on superheroes. Even if you did not collect comic books, you have a pretty good grasp of the basics thanks to cartoons, live action shows and the comics at the barbershop.

A year ago, a ten year old probably couldn’t tell you what a Repulsor Ray was, because he probably had no idea who Iron Man was. Even now, if they saw the movie and enjoyed it, it’s just another action/special effects movie. Kids have less of an attachment to superheroes these days. There are too many other options and they move on. When I was a kid, you started with Superman, Batman and Spiderman and then you came know Iron Man, Captain America, Green Lantern, The Hulk, Thor and the X-Men, to name a few. And we never moved on. We are superhero people.

You see, all these superhero movies that come out are adult movies disguised as kid movies. We've been waiting all our lives for feature films based on these characters. Ask a 10 year old if he was excited about the Transformers or the upcoming G.I. Joe movie? Who are they? Now ask a thirty five year old. He’s giddy.

So if you are a superhero person, you have already seen Iron Man and probably liked it. If not, I can tell you I liked it. I thought it was one of the better superhero movies. It is more colorful and flamboyant than the new Batman movies, but it treats the source material with the same respect. And that’s one of the things we superhero guys appreciate.

Robert Downey Jr. is perfect as Tony Stark/Iron Man. He is cocky, funny, sincere and downright entertaining in the role. He makes the movie. Jeff Bridges is also great as the bad guy. You may not even recognize him at first. He is certainly not “The Dude” in this movie. Even Gwyneth Paltrow is good in the lead female role. We superhero guys are usually most critical of the women in these movies, just ask Katie Holmes. (Batman Begins) They cast top notch actors and it shows.

The movie is not perfect, but it certainly is very well done. I’d say it was one of the best comic book movies ever made… definitely in the top ten. Batman Begins and X-Men 2 being two of my favorites, so you can see where I am coming from. Bottom line, I think Iron Man is a really good movie… superhero guys should love it, and the rest of you should enjoy it too.

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