‘Iron Man 3:’ Badass Bromance

Inside sources* (*my brain) say that throughout the development of Iron Man 3, Shane Black (co-writer/director), Jon Favreau (executive producer of Iron Man 3, director of the first two Iron Mans, Pete from Friends, Mike from Swingers, and host of one of the greatest television programs of all time, Dinner for Five), and Robert Downey, Jr. (Tony Stark, Sherlock Holmes, Charlie Chaplin, and cast member of the very worst season of Saturday Night Live), all lived in a hotel room together. There, they stayed up late every night, watched old movies together, had pillow fights, swam in the indoor pool, ordered a ton of pizza, drank soda and ate candy at night, and giggled in their pajamas. And that’s how Iron Man 3 got made.

Okay, maybe that isn’t actually what they did and that was a birthday party I went to in fifth grade, but it also could have been exactly what happened. Iron Man 3 is fun, funny, and full of so much bromance. Way more bromance than romance. And it is perfect that way.

I realized today that I may be the only moviegoer who cares not one bit for the action or the special effects in superhero movies. Yes, I can tell when it looks bad, when the effects are silly or really CGI-y, or something, but I don’t get disappointed when it does because it doesn’t affect my opinion of the movie. I don’t see movies for the quality of the action. I can be kind of entertained by it, but it really doesn’t do much for me. So I have no idea if the action in Iron Man 3 was great or not great or terrible. It was there. There was a bunch of it. I feel like it was probably okay.

I was entirely focused on the wonderfully witty Shane Blackiness of the biggest blockbuster movie to open in a good while. Shane Black, co-writer/director of Iron Man 3, also wrote and directed my personal favorite Robert Downey Jr.-bromantical-bromance, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which was Black’s directing debut. In fact, it is the only movie Black directed before this big one. From the very first second of Iron Man 3, Robert Downey, Jr. is Kiss Kiss Bang Bang-ing his way through a wry, self-conscious voice over narration. It immediately nestled me into this beautiful cocoon of Shane Black wit, and I was no longer worried.

Because I was worried. The first two Iron Man installments had Favreau at the helm, and if Favreau’s in charge, we’re all okay. Really, I would feel better if he was President. Of the United States. Of America. But I was worried about this one. Not that I didn’t have faith in Shane Black. As stated before, I love the guy, and one of the hardest times I have ever laughed in my life was while watching KKBB in my dorm freshman year of college when Val Kilmer yells, “Why in pluperfect hell would you pee on a corpse?!” (…grammar jokes really get me). But the trailers for this third Iron Man were not the least bit funny! There were no jokes, and Tony Stark seemed really sad, and Ben Kingsley had an awful, distractingly indistinguishable accent. I was worried.

But in Iron Man 3, Tony Stark proved almost immediately to be his biting, winking, smirking self, Ben Kingsley’s role is just simply magnificent, action-y things happen, and there’s even a funny minor plot with a little kid that Stark befriends, or, shall I say, bromances. I haven’t watched the first two in a while and I have a terrible memory, but I would venture to say that comedy-wise, Iron Man 3 is up there with the first one, if not even a little drier and more daring with its jokes (meaning more trusting of the audience). Villain-wise, it’s a little weak. Guy Pearce is just too tiny a person; he’s a little presence, and his background and the reason for his evil is lacking somewhat. But then again, without spoiling too much, Ben Kinglsey’s character sort of distracts from what’s missing in that evil and adds to the offbeat color and tone of the entire movie. Action-wise, I have no idea because I do not notice these things. And bromance-wise, it takes all of the cakes and shoves your face into them like your playful bff at your 21st b-day bash! Tony and the little kid, Tony and Happy (Favreau), Tony and Don Cheadle’s mostly boring character…there is a network of bromantical veins that feeds the heart of Iron Man 3 and holds it together. It keeps the movie’s blood pumping, pumping out jokes, pumping out super cool superhero-y things, and pumping out massive amounts of bro love.

Shane Black has been collecting medals in bromance creation since he wrote the Lethal Weapons, and with this movie, he has melted all those medals down and molded them into a super-suit of witty, dry, lovable bromance medal armor with which he can now hug the world forever. And I am okay with that.

And oh my god I almost forgot! My actual favorite part of Iron Man 3 can be summed up in two, adorable words: ADAM PALLY.

Grade: A-

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