It’s six months later. The US Government is hassling Tony Stark to hand over his Iron Man tech, which of course he resists. He is also dying because the palladium core that makes the Iron Man suit work and keeps Tony alive is poisoning him.
Mickey Rourke plays scientist Ivan Vanko who uses the same arc technology to build weapons to use against Stark in order to avenge his father. Sam Rockwell plays Justin Hammer, Tony’s rival in the weapons industry. They team up.
Vanko is your basic smart criminal villain with a criminal father who dies, so the son blames the Starks for everything. The standard villain template for a LOT of superhero stories. Villain with Daddy issues (see Black Panther for another example).
I was annoyed that Tony kept his health problems from everyone. I suppose I can somewhat understand why he does it since he has always kept everyone at arm’s length and only engaged in superficial (sexual) relationships and public events. His parents died when he was young. Etc.
His (pretty much only) friend, Col. Rhodey Rhodes ends up taking one of the other prototypes to the military after Tony spirals out of control at his birthday party. He thinks it’s his last one, give the guy a break. But of course, no one knows.
Hammer ends up making a deal to replicate Stark’s Iron Man tech with the military and Vanko. The movie, once again, is full of testosterone, guns, bombs, stuff blowing up. I really think Marvel started these movies with the male 18-34 age group in mind.
The females are very much stereotypes, sexed up, boobs on display, tight outfits, one -dimensional. The relationship drama with Pepper Potts annoyed me. It’s The Big Misunderstanding. Tony doesn’t tell her what is going on with him personally, so they are fighting and existing in an alienated situation. It’s all resolved once he communicates. This is a trope I really hate in books and movies.
It’s not that I have any issues with women dressing how they want – I don’t. It’s the way they engage with the men that bothers me. Agent Carter got all jealous and spiteful in the first Captain America. Here, Pepper Potts plays the overly-emotional “I can’t handle you being a superhero” part here. (Of course, once communication is established, this is solved.)
I had completely forgotten Black Widow, Nick Fury, and Agent Coulsen were in this! I think I liked this one better than the first just because of their presence. Black Widow is completely sexualized but I can allow it since that is her whole assassin method. Seduce, then kill. They never see her coming.
I just wonder, though, what happened to Vanko’s poor cockatoo, Irina???