What You Need To Know:
IRON MAN is an enjoyable ride with terrific special effects. A battle of good versus evil, it contains minimal foul language and one implied sex scene. However, as a role model, Tony is a womanizer and rarely far from an alcoholic drink. As he finds his calling to protect refugees from terrorists, those aspects to his character are dropped, suggesting a positive change. The military scenes are too intense for children, though most actual violence is either off screen or between men battling in suits of high tech armor. IRON MAN also contains some foul language, so caution is advised for older children.
(BB, CC, CapCap, H, LL, VV, S, N, AA, MM) Ultimately strong moral worldview with strong redemptive, somewhat allegorical elements of getting a new heart, taking responsibility for one’s actions and strong capitalist chooses against corporate corruption along with slight humanist elements; nine obscenities, one strong profanity using Jesus and seven light profanities; much fantasy violence of men in robot type suits, war time battles with machines guns and explosions, opening sequence shows soldiers being killed; brief scene of implied pre-marital sex and hero has promiscuous reputation; upper male nudity in medical context and women in short skirts, bare midriffs and base backs; much alcohol use by hero and others including drunkenness; no smoking or illegal drugs; and, lying, corporation selling arms to terrorists, kidnapping, and betrayal by friend.
Based on the Marvel comic book, IRON MAN is the story of billionaire defense contractor Tony Stark (played by Robert Downy, Jr.) who builds a high tech suit of armor and inadvertently becomes a superhero. The movie is an enjoyable comic book adventure that is also big on laughs.
After a new missile demonstration in Afghanistan, Tony is kidnapped by terrorists (using arms by Tony’s company) and forced to build the weapon he just demonstrated. Instead, he builds a suit of armor that helps him escape. Back home, he tries to change the direction of the company since somehow terrorists have access to his missiles and other high tech weapons. However, his noble efforts are blocked by his longtime friend and corporate partner Obadiah (played by Jeff Bridges) who has his own agenda. Undaunted, Tony builds a new version of the armor suit and attempts to stop the terrorists. There are a few twists and turns to the plot that would spoil the viewing, but safe to say it’s a roller coaster adventure. Tony’s assistant Pepper Pots (played by Gwyneth Paltrow) comes to Tony’s rescue at the end, and the movie lays the groundwork for a romance.
The movie is more character oriented than many other comic book movies and may not deliver enough action scenes for some viewers. Tony delivers comedic lines throughout the movie, and so sometimes, the tone is uneven as to whether the focus is on comedy, sci-fi adventure or an emotional story. However, it is an enjoyable experience. The movie drags a little in the middle as Tony builds and perfects the suit of armor, but then the plot hurries and wraps up at a lightning pace.
Downey delivers an offbeat performance of the character that is one moment glib and cynical and the next minute caring and dedicated to a higher cause. Daniels is convincing as the corporate man out for a villainous agenda. The special effects are terrific, but are not necessarily groundbreaking.
Ultimately, the story is one of good overcoming evil, though at the outset it’s not clear exactly who the villains really are. IRON MAN is similar to many superhero stories where the abilities of one man change the course of history as he uses his genius and wealth for good. Though not overt in IRON MAN, there is a humanist quality to these kind of stories and so discretion is advised.
The movie is intended for young viewers. There is some foul language and one sex scene is implied. However, as a role model, Tony is a womanizer and rarely is far from an alcoholic drink. As he finds his calling to protect refugees from terrorists, those aspects to his character are dropped, perhaps suggesting a change in his ways. The military scenes could be too intense for a young child, though most actual violence is either off screen or between men battling in suits of high tech armor.
As far as summer movies go, IRON MAN is an enjoyable ride as long as discretion and caution is exercised for younger viewers.