The start of the Summer movie madness has officially begun!! The sun is out, the weather is hot as hell, and Iron Man 2 is finally here!! I love everything about the Summer time. But the things I like most are the Summer blockbusters that soar into theaters and create sell out midnight showings and cheering crowds. It's almost like going to a rock concert every Friday for 3 months straight....except better. This Summer started off quite nicely with Iron Man 2 as I had the pleasure of seeing it opening night this past Thursday at midnight.
If you haven't already seen the first Iron Man just stop what you're doing and go buy it now, it's great. If you have then you're like me and have been waiting for the sequel ever since the credits started to roll after the first one. The film opens with the Russian Ivan Vanko, played by Mickey Rourke, sitting by his father as he dies right there at his side. Ivan becomes....how can I put this....fucking PISSED. For some reason or another we learn in the following scene that this is somehow Tony Starks fault and Ivan immediately goes to work on his own suit to be able to get revenge on Tony and the Stark family name. We then cut to Stark flying into his own Expo in the Iron Man suit followed by a court appearance where we then learn that he has yet another enemy who want's to put Stark out of biz, Justin Hammer, played by Sam Rockwell. Following that scene we realize that Tony is becoming poisoned by the Iron Man chest piece heart thing and he's slowly dying. That's really the entire story right there in a nutshell.
After an incredible scene at the Monte Carlo race track in Italy where Vanko and Stark battle it out, Justin Hammer soon realizes that he needs Vanko's skills, badly if he wants to create a suit that's tough enough to face the Iron Man. Hammer soon breaks Vanko out of jail and they immediately get to work. Vanko and Hammer were my favorite characters in the film and although Robert Downy Jr. is always great, I thought Mickey Rourke and Sam Rockwell did the best acting jobs in the film. Rourke spent some time off screen in a Russian prison to conduct research fro the role, researched and learned how to speak the Russian language, and apparently wore his own clothes during his scenes. His overall appearance was a little over the top but I actually really liked it. It was original.
Although it was fun I definitely had some complaints with the film. First off there's about a half hour of the film in the middle that I thought was really bad. It's the scene where Stark has a birthday party at his house and he ends up fighting War Machine. It was so over the top, goofy, and just kinda stupid. It just didn't work for me. Second, I hated how War Machine (Rhodey) was introduced. I mean he just hops in the suit and starts fighting Iron Man, his friend, at his own party. I understand why he did it but I thought it was poorly done and I thought in place of that ENTIRE party scene/fight we should have seen Rhodey actually learn how to use the suit. It would've been more epic. Now the result is that I don't give a shit about the War Machine character, they lost my interest now. Also they should've just kept Terrance Howard in the role because Don Cheadle didn't bring jack to the role, he sucked. Thirdly, Tony was a TAD just a TAD over the top with all his comedy. I mean it was to the point where I didn't believe that Tony Stark could even have a serious conversation with someone without cracking a joke and talking a mile a minute. But I DID like him, that was just a minor set back for me.
All in all I enjoyed Iron Man 2 but not quite as much as the first one. It's definitely a blu-ray that I will buy for sure and watch many more times, especially the Monte Carlo scene. Also another thing I loved was John Favreau's character, Happy Hogan. He was hilarious in this and had much more screen time than in the first one. Favs did a great job playing him. SPOILER- Stay after the credits to see Thor's hammer. Iron Man 2 gets a 7 outa 10.