Iron Man 3

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 01:02 am
oyceter: teruterubouzu default icon (Default)
[personal profile] oyceter
As previously noted on Twitter, I did not hate this! I actually liked it? And I actually liked Tony Stark??? WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE WORLD??!!

This was an enjoyable summer blockbuster, which exceeds my expectations! I had previously sworn not to see the movie on learning about the Mandarin, but then I saw reviews trickling in saying that it was actually really cool, then more reviews from people in my dwircle. I spoiled myself rotten re: the Mandarin, but even so, some of the footage was painful to watch. Less the Mandarin's broadcasts, to my surprise, since I was so distracted by Ben Kingsley's unidentifiable accent with hints of AMURRRican, but oh, did we have to have the Chinese women in qipao?

So. I still wish they hadn't gone with the Mandarin, but since they did, I am glad they managed to do so in a way that was subversive.

Similarly, I wish Marvel would actually have one movie (JUST ONE, MARVEL, WHY IS THIS SO HARD?) starring someone who isn't a white guy, but given the lineup, I was really happy to see a Marvel movie, and an Iron Man one at that, not only trying to critique US presence in Pakistan, but also actively dismantling drone Iron Man suits. I don't think all the critique works, since obviously none of the brown people get an actual voice, even if Rhodey expresses his doubt that he's doing any rescuing, but it's heads above Scary Brown People. And I kind of loved the guy who laughs at Rhodey because his password is so stupid.

I had also been spoiled re: Pepper and Rhodey getting to be cool, and Pepper getting to wear the suit at some point. I was actually less excited about Pepper in the suit since it is over so fast! I was hoping she would get to wear it the whole time, but then I guess you wouldn't have Tony presumed dead. But OMG. Extremis!Pepper! I knew Extremis was in the movie, but I had no idea what it was, since all attempts at giving me comic book summaries slip right through my head because they are so convoluted. I had thought one of the suits would save her during the fall, but no! OMG. I did not think Pepper would get that much action! She was so badass! And SHE'S the one who gets to kill off Killian, which was nice, given how much he wanted her as a trophy.

I also loved Rhodey being competent without the suit, particularly his gun skills. And the sequence where he gets to rescue the President was awesome.

I actually loved all the time out of the suit for everyone. As opposed to IM2, where Tony is pretty much in the suit all the time to overcompensate for his fear and manpain, he's out of the suit for the majority of IM3. I personally think Pepper knew something was up when Tony-controlled suit tried to romance her because he hasn't been needing it as much of late, despite still spending a ton of his time making various versions. And then of course, there's him posing by the suit when Harley finds them, as well as Harley saying that Tony's not Iron Man, he's the mechanic. And I love that Tony takes pride in that. So, who knew? I actually like Tony Stark when he's not being an asshole, attempting to privatize world peace, drinking too much, coming on to a ton of women, and antagonizing Steve!

Tony's big action scenes are almost all improvisation, from him having to use surrounding materials in the fight with Extremis people in Rose Hill to his Home Depot get up while breaking into the Mandarin's compound. It's not quite how he spends the Helicarrier action sequence repairing things, but close enough for me! Honestly, I find the suit kind of boring. And the final showdown actually has very little Tony action, all things considering. Much of it is him jumping around trying to find or get to Pepper, or falling out of various suits. He does, of course, have the slugfest with Killian in the end, but it feels very different from him just going at Thor in Avengers. (Hi! I have a lot of Avengers comparisons! This is because I have blocked IM1 and IM2 from my mind.)

Also, thank you IM3 for not doing the "I can save the politically important person/the masses/whatever or I can save the woman I love! How can I choooooooose?!" thing. Teamwork! It helps you save everyone, who knew?! And sometimes the people you are trying to save can come back and save you too!

[personal profile] coffeeandink has a lot about how MCU refutes rugged individualism, which is pretty much why I liked Avengers so much. I was so happy to see that carry through for IM3, of all movies! Tony and Rhodey take on a ton together, and then of course Pepper finishes off Killian, but there's also Harley and even Gary the creepy fanboy. I actually liked this Tony, who is still sarcastic and quippy and pointed but isn't mean. He barely even yells at the media surrounding him and channels most of the rage toward the Mandarin (Stupidly. But I guess he would not be Tony Stark without some stupid impulsive decisions. Srsly Tony. Don't tell him your address!). He's nice to Harley, which didn't surprise me, but what did surprise me was how he dealt with Gary. And he was emotionally mature! He told Pepper right off that he wasn't doing well! He apologized! That was when I figured I could really sit back and enjoy.

Also, in conjunction with the theme of moving away from weapons toward helping people, I love that one of the longer Tony action sequences is him flying around getting the various people in the air to catch on to one another. Bonus points because I hate the collateral damage in action movies (Rose Hill, frex), and I felt so bad for the people getting sucked out of the airplane! I have seen to many action movies in which the villain gets sucked out and then chopped to bits by the jet engine.

I know I keep comparing MCU movies with the Batverse movies, but IM3 really feels like the cap of all the differences. Tony isn't nobly self-sacrificing himself in Avengers--self-sacrifice, yes, but like he tells Steve, he's not going to if he can find some other way out--and he's saved by Hulk, who he's made an emotional connection with. And here, like Batman, he's giving up the superhero mantle (temporarily, I am sure), but there isn't the male power fantasy level of a statue erected to his manpain or how no one really appreciates him except the few people who know his secret. He's just moving on to another part of himself and wiring more things together. And he manages to do so without cutting almost everyone off from his life!

Random notes:
  • Was Pepper in so much white before Avengers? I remember her white button down shirt there, and here there was the white suit and then another white button down.

  • Also, love that she takes off the shoes when she gets home and that she's barefoot when she goes to confront Tony in his lab. Nice echo of the Avengers scene.

  • Love the brief shot of Pepper on the cover of Forbes or some other business magazine. Also love that Pepper doesn't fall prey to Killian negging her about "Oh but you aren't Tony, so how bout you do it my way instead?" and she's just, "Yup, not Tony, and still don't like your thing!"

  • Also loved Pepper's reaction post-fight of "Oh my god, that was so violent," because that is what I think a lot of the time re: action movies. Even though I love watching Pepper beat down Killian.

  • Was comparing Tony underwater in this movie, struggling for his life, versus confident Tony underwater in the opening of Avengers, connecting something to make Stark Tower go live.

  • Really could have done without the ableism in the Extremis storyline. I was already feeling nidgy when we learned that was how AIM was recruiting people to test Extremis, and it was even worse as the Vice President's motivation. Disabled children, always the best motivational device!

  • I laughed so much at Trevor Slatterly. I know people said they didn't whitewash Ben Kingsley, but I didn't actually catch that part in the movie.

  • I was really sad Maya did not say the thing about how she and Tony are the same. I think that is the only bit of the Extremis comics summary that I remember!

  • Also, I am really annoyed Maya was killed off. Glad she and Pepper actually have a fairly non-confrontational conversation though!


This is all for now, since I should go to bed!

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 10:16 am (UTC)
yifu: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] yifu
. I still wish they hadn't gone with the Mandarin, but since they did, I am glad they managed to do so in a way that was subversive.

That's what nagged at me - that the movie turns upside down the expectations re: terrorists (Middle East, East Asia, Islam) but not... firmly? enough. It's like, instead of firmly showing that these assumptions may be erronous, the movie chooses to turn it into a joke and leave it at that. Or I might be sensitive because the Mandarin's broadcasts so comfortably reinforce the Muslims-as-sources-of-trouble stereotypes, and the revelation that is Trevor is not enough for me to balance those out.

When Tony went, "What? You mad at me?" I was half-hoping Pepper would at least punch him lightly to show that she's no lightweight now :) I still am not too fond of Gwyneth Paltrow, but Pepper's portrayal in IM3 is more exciting than in the two previous movies.
And now I want to watch IM2 again because Natasha.

(Hi, my name is Eve, and I comment on every IM3 post on my reading list.)

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 11:30 am (UTC)
londonkds: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] londonkds
Yeah, there's nothing in Trevor's portrayal, to an English person, to suggest that he isn't white.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 12:44 pm (UTC)
coffeeandink: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] coffeeandink
But what should there be? It's not like "Trevor Slatterly" is any more Anglo than "Ben Kingsley".

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 01:57 pm (UTC)
shewhohashope: moonlit forest/blossoms (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] shewhohashope
Ben Kingsley isn't his real name either! And the line about them giving him plastic surgery made me think they meant him to be a white guy.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 02:44 pm (UTC)
coffeeandink: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] coffeeandink
(Hi! I missed you!)

I know, but Trevor is an ACT-or and Kingsley is biracial, right? It didn't seem strange to me that he might change his name to get more roles or have a white father. The surgery line gave me a lot more pause, but I can also read it as a reference to Killian's mish-mash of Asian/Middle Eastern imagery and/or a desire to just make Trevor look scarier.

I don't read the lack of specifically racialized markers for Trevor as meaning he was white; I read it as another commentary on the idea of brown = foreign, this Asian guy couldn't possibly be from London and like football. If it were a book I might feel differently, but in film visuals mean a lot.

I'm not trying to argue that this depiction is any less white-gazey, or that it wouldn't have been better to indicate that Trevor had these typical implicitly white-guy characteristics and also cultural differences. But for an actor to be whitewashed means to me that (a) they could pass as white and there's no mention of race in the script; or (b) all of their biological relatives, particularly their parents, are cast as white.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 03:03 pm (UTC)
telophase: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] telophase
I automatically assumed the plastic surgery line was to explain how nobody recognized Slattery from seeing him in whatever B-movie/stage/restaurant server jobs he'd had.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 08:48 pm (UTC)
Posted by (Anonymous)
(Hiii!)

There was really nothing marking his racial background other than Ben Kingsley's face, which is definitively non white, imo. I suppose the surgery could be read as making sure people don't recognise him, I was just worried because I haaaaate and generally distrust everyone involved with Iron Man, after the I was forced to see the first film.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 08:49 pm (UTC)
shewhohashope: moonlit forest/blossoms (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] shewhohashope
Ugh I forgot how to stay logged in. This was me!

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 08:59 pm (UTC)
coffeeandink: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] coffeeandink
Hee, I figured that out.

I was SO SURPRISED you saw IM3!

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 09:10 pm (UTC)
shewhohashope: moonlit forest/blossoms (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] shewhohashope
I have a cinema buddy, and I made her watch The Host, and refused to watch the Hobbit or Star Trek with her. It was peer pressure, basically.

(no subject)

Wed, May. 8th, 2013 03:38 pm (UTC)
coffeeandink: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] coffeeandink
I am just shocked that you picked IM3 out of all the bad film choices available to you! :) I would have advised you SO STRONGLY not to see this movie.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 09:11 pm (UTC)
shewhohashope: moonlit forest/blossoms (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] shewhohashope
That's actually how I ended up seeing the Avengers with my sister! She was paying, and we'd vetoed every other film, and I knew I'd have people to discuss the Avengers with for sure. I hate being entirely out of the loop.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 02:15 pm (UTC)
londonkds: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] londonkds
I don't know, but the original post asked if there was anything to notice.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 11:57 am (UTC)
princessofgeeks: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] princessofgeeks
IM3: Tony Learns Things!

Thanks for the post.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 12:50 pm (UTC)
coffeeandink: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] coffeeandink
I know I keep comparing MCU movies with the Batverse movies, but IM3 really feels like the cap of all the differences.

Ahahaha, I cut all the explicit Nolan comparisons out of my post because I still haven't seen TDKR and why bother antagonizing Nolan fans when I don't actually remember the first two movies that well. But my Twitter thoughts align with yours!

I don't think Tony is even giving up the superhero mantle -- his final words (pre-tag) are "I am Iron Man." He blows the drones up as a Christmas present for Pepper and gratitude that Pepper's alive and an acknowledgement that Pepper was right when she called the suits distractions. He's not blowing up being a superhero, he's blowing up the parts of himself that used being a superhero to separate himself from other people.

Love the brief shot of Pepper on the cover of Forbes or some other business magazine.

Yes!

(no subject)

Wed, May. 8th, 2013 01:18 am (UTC)
ghost_lingering: Weaver gets down to Savannah's level and looks her in the eyes (daughters of robots)
Posted by [personal profile] ghost_lingering
But TDKR has Catwoman!!!! Anne Hathaway's Catwoman is so great!!! (I feel like my roommate when she talks about IM2: but it has Natasha and Natasha is so great, she says!!!) ...so I guess the point is that if you watch either TDKR or IM2 the best way to do it is with lots of fastforwarding through the "heroes" and to focus only on the ladies. (And Rhodney.) (And every time JGL!Robin comes on screen you sing the Call Me Maybe parody done from his pov, because it's hilarious.)

One thing that I find really striking when comparing the Nolan films to the IM films is that Nolan's films don't actually work as a cohesive trilogy. The plotting is fine, whatever, but thematically it's all over the place. Even within TDKR everything is thematically all over the place. (As my friend, who liked TDKR a lot, put it: "it's a really weird film".) I haven't seen IM3 yet, but I'm spoiled* enough to know that it's thematically connected to the other IM films & Avengers and that the character arc for Tony makes sense. And I find that really interesting, because I feel like Nolan is trying to be "gritty" and "realistic" and "say things" whereas the MCU films aren't really; they are explosion summer blockbuster movies. Which, for me, makes comparing the two this weird mix of finding the MCU films very surface, but in a more cohesive way, whereas Nolan's films are trying to be deeper but in a very disjointed way.

Basically: I find both series interesting and there are parts to each of them that I like, but I don't really understand either's staunch defenders; I understand the detractor's of both better because there is quite a lot to be a detractor of in both.

Except Catwoman and Natasha and Pepper. If someone doesn't like them then that's a clue there's going to be a fundamental disconnect between me and them.

*Purposefully spoiling myself by reading people's reaction posts on dreamwidth -- like this post; I know some people are saying that you should remain unspoiled for the "twist" but ... I don't really trust the creators enough to go in unspoiled.

(no subject)

Wed, May. 8th, 2013 11:17 pm (UTC)
ghost_lingering: Crichton got hit with a television set (fandom: we have DOLLUCKS!)
Posted by [personal profile] ghost_lingering
That is good reasoning for having more of a grudge against Nolan's films! I hate how other fans can ruin things. I think I have equal grudges against Nolan's trilogy and MCU, because MCU has Joss and terrible misuse of Norse mythology/Loki (the second of which is super idiosyncratic, I know, but it's also super important to me for various reasons). NGL, I think part of why I'm able to enjoy either series despite my grudges is because I have friends who are fannish about one or the other, but not in annoying or "everything about this is perfect" ways, so I can be fannish with them about the films and avoid the rest of the fans on the internet if I want to or I can cherry pick the internet reactions I read (as I'm doing with IM3 spoilers). Which helps quite a bit, I think, at least when it comes to getting annoyed at humanity.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 01:04 pm (UTC)
likeadeuce: (oldfriends)
Posted by [personal profile] likeadeuce
Also, thank you IM3 for not doing the "I can save the politically important person/the masses/whatever or I can save the woman I love! How can I choooooooose?!" thing. Teamwork! It helps you save everyone, who knew?! And sometimes the people you are trying to save can come back and save you too!

Excellent point!

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 02:03 pm (UTC)
shewhohashope: moonlit forest/blossoms (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] shewhohashope
The film was definitely not as bad as it could have been (see the first Iron Man film), but all the enthusiasm about how the film handled the Mandarin is a little alienating. Like when the film expected us to sympathise with Tony being torn over saving Pepper or the president. I can't overstate how little I cared about this dilemma. Or how little I cared for that sweatshop joke.

(no subject)

Tue, May. 7th, 2013 08:45 pm (UTC)
shewhohashope: moonlit forest/blossoms (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] shewhohashope
I've changed it a few times! It's currently mybrotherspeach.

(no subject)

Wed, May. 8th, 2013 05:11 pm (UTC)
octopedingenue: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] octopedingenue
Maya gave herself Extremis and is fine, lalalala you can't tell me anything different.

Tony and Gary the fanboy felt so weirdly sweet to me. Some combination of Tony being totally comfortable with and in control of the situation and NICE, and Gary being helpful!fanboy, for me totally negated any potential "haha look at the creepy gay obsessed fan" mocking it could have been. It didn't feel like Tony would have reacted any differently to it being an obsessed fanGIRL.

I dunno, I may be over identifying, I just laughed really hard/fondly at that bit. And honestly if RDJ or, like, Gina Torres suddenly appeared in my car and said, "Kawy, I need your car for a SECRET MISSION," I would probably totally go "OKAY WHERE ARE WE GOING DO YOU NEED MONEY SHOULD I BRING SNACKSāˆ"

(no subject)

Thu, May. 9th, 2013 06:31 pm (UTC)
octopedingenue: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] octopedingenue
Yeah, it was an excellent redirect on Tony the Spin Master's part. Not gonna lie, I'm now trolling the kinkmeme for "Gary & Tony: Crimefighters with Van!" fic.

I have these Thoughts about Tony & the media & public image, between Gary & the reporters in this movie and Tony's press conferences in all of them. It is interesting to me how Tony has grown up as the focus of this media/fannish attention basically his whole life to the point that he's completely comfortable with it. Not that he always enjoys or seeks the spotlight (though he often does!), but that he both assumes he is usually THE focus of attention (only half-ish in a self-centered way?) and doesn't care, so former-assistant Pepper was there to smooth his PR because he doesn't really care and doesn't much bother to filter himself for the media. Hence his unusually candid
Edited Thu, May. 9th, 2013 06:46 pm (UTC)

AGH hit post too soon

Thu, May. 9th, 2013 06:45 pm (UTC)
octopedingenue: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] octopedingenue
his unusually candid press conferences in IM1 and his mutual give-and-take with reporter Christine. Public Tony = private Tony, only louder. And now in IM3 Tony basically gets his home destroyed and the Mandarin after him because the "When are you going to just kill this guy?" reporter pissed him off. I mean, yes he was angry with the Mandarin, but that whole scene plays like he's goaded into mouthing off so he can go "There's your soundbyte, now fuck off and fuck you, also I break your phone!!!!!"

Then contrast Mandarin/Trevor, who is a media spin master too, only he's a totally fake crafted image. Public Mandarin = NOT private Mandarin. And contrast Cap/Steve, who is used to the spotlight but doesn't like it at all. It's public Cap = still basically private Cap, but moreso because Steve tries to be the pure-in-thought-and-deed example than because he lacks filters.

(no subject)

Sat, May. 16th, 2015 05:55 am (UTC)
Posted by (Anonymous)
It was so much fun, I didnt care about the logic faults.

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