It was funny watching Iron Man again, this time on DVD and just after hearing that Terrence Howard is being replaced by Don Cheadle. Don’t get me wrong, I love Don Cheadle, it was just weird seeing Howard and thinking about Don.
Now that I’ve spouted on about replacing actors, it’s time to think about the unlikely casting of Robert Downer Jr. No one in his or her right mind would cast him in the role of a superhero, but then in reality this isn’t a superhero movie, it’s a movie about a man who has to realise that he must change, and in this role Downey Jr excels.
Being the rich, successful, lady magnet, son of a rich industrialist with a brain the size of Manhattan, it’s easy to see why Tony Stark (Downey Jr) is an egotistical party boy at the start of the movie, but a near death experience and having to face the reality of what Stark Industries actually does, initiates rapid change in Stark’s life, cumulating in the creation of Iron Man.
The strength of Iron Man is that this is the movie where we see the transformation and the creation of a new hero. There is a palatable change, one that we can in some ways relate to.
But the human drama alone would not make for an action packed thrill ride that Iron Man is. For that you need the CGI excess that is the red and gold suit of super abilities, the robotic endoskeleton that turns Tony Stark into the all-capable Iron Man.
“I shouldn’t be alive unless it’s for a reason.” –Tony Stark
It’s a change of attitude formed by a (literal) change of heart that is the genesis into Tony’s life, and whilst the change isn’t a 100% turn around (as you will see at the end of the movie) it creates in Tony Stark a more likable character, some one we can look up to. A hero.
“I’ll give you a new heart; put a new spirit in you. I’ll remove the stone heart from your body and replace it with a heart that’s God willed, not self willed.” –Ezekiel 36:26 (The Message)
They say that the eyes are the window to the soul, but it’s the heart that powers the body, and as Stark continually tries to improve his heart, so his attitude changes to everyone around him and he starts putting other people before him, to the extent that he’s willing to risk his life for those who he loves; thus the transformation from Industrialist to Superhero is complete.
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read.
Rating: M – Contains Violence.
Duration: 126 mins.
Genre: Action & Adventure.
Director: Jon Favreau.
Actors: Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Bridges, Hilary Swank, Terrence Howard.
Release Date: Available now.