Movie Review: Ironman 3

 

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Director : Shane Black

Starring : Robert Downey Jr, Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebecca Hall, Guy Pearce, Ben Kingsley, William Sadler, Ty Simpkins, Don Cheadle, Paul Bettany, Jon Favreau, Stan Lee.

Running Time : 130 minutes

Release Date :   24 April 2013

 

‘ Unleash the power behind the armor ‘

The third offering from the multi billion dollar Ironman franchise is finally here. Well, I say the third but as someone pointed out to me yesterday, The Avengers was really the third so this movie should be called Ironman 4. But that’s semantics…..

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Tony Stark (Downey Jr) is back. And how. Downey Jr is remarkable as Stark and has made this character his own. I love him as an actor and he does himself and Marvel proud with his Ironman portrayal. Stark is in a happily committed relationship with the CEO of  Stark Enterprises, Pepper Potts (Paltrow). He spends his time perfecting the Ironman suits and basically keeping the world safe. Oh and Stark’s favourite robot helper is back…..helping out and getting into trouble as usual. These scenes are always among my favourites in the Ironman movies.

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Ironman 3 is chock full of good guys, most notably Stark’s best friend James Rhodes (Cheadle). Colonel Rhodes is the US government’s very own metal-bound hero The Patriot. He used to be War Machine but was redubbed with the less confronting moniker The Patriot. Watch for a very funny password moment about 3/4 of the way into the movie. Real laugh out loud scenes.

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The new villain is a terrorist known as The Mandarin (Kingsley) and he is an evil, evil figure. He takes over news broadcasts to issue his threats and the general population has no choice but to witness the atrocities committed. Part of  The Mandarin’s quest to demoralise the public is to destroy, completely, the Stark residence. It is a powerful moment for all concerned and Stark disappears, presumed dead. This is when the real superhero stuff starts. YEAH!!!

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I’m going to stop now because I will be giving too much away. Suffice to say this movie has many great characters…..from the brilliant but slightly unhinged Aldrich Killian (Australia’s own Pearce), the adorable kid Harley (Simpkins) who the injured Stark befriends to the vengeful Scientist Maya (Hall) and the menacingly nasty thug Sal (Sadler).

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This movie is AH-MA-ZING!!!  Just amazing.

It is fun…. it is funny… it is quirky …. it is action packed …. it has a heart ….. it has a soul…. it has honourable good guys …. it has very bad bad guys….. it has romance….. it has drama …. it has snappy one-liners …. it has thoughtful engaging dialogue…. it has superheros who can fly …. it has superheros who are flawed. It has everything you could want in a movie.

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As many of you know, I am a geek girl. Not a super geek girl but geeky enough to have been super-excited about the previews of Star Trek and Man of Steel before the main attraction and but not geeky enough to venture into Sheldon Cooper obsessive territory. I am sure the die hard Marvel comic fans will have issues with this movie but for the rest of us, it will prove thoroughly entertaining and immensely watchable.

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And this movie has a major twist. I didn’t see it coming as so many in the theatre proclaimed they did………well judging by the whispered comments during and after a  little bit of eaves-dropping after the movie in the foyer. The twist is great……just perfect. I loved it almost as much as I loved the robot in the dunce hat.

I absolutely recommend you go and see this movie. Take your kids, your parents, your significant other, your I-want-you-to-be-my-significant-other, your best mate, your friends and their friends. Just go and see it. It has something for everyone and you will not be disappointed. It runs for just over 2 hours but you barely notice. It’s fine for all but the littlest of movie goers……although I’m the mum that would let my 7 year old see this movie and death stare you right back as you judged me in the foyer while I was buying popcorn.

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This is a more than worthy addition to the Marvel Avengers bank of titles and not to be missed on the big screen. I didn’t bother with 3D…. my regular readers know my aversion to 3D (waste of money unless it’s animated………and a good animation at that) …. but that’s not to say it wasn’t brilliant in that format. There are rumours this is the last Ironman movie so don’t miss out.

So what are you waiting for…….go book a ticket 🙂

Love Flick xx

Movie Review: Flight [MA] – #Flight #Oscars #BestActor

 

Movie Title: Flight  [MA]

Director : Robert Zemeckis

Starring : Denzel Washington, Nadine Velazquez, Don Cheadle, Kelly Reilly, Bruce Greenwood , John Goodman

Running Time : 138 minutes

Release Date :   In Cinemas Now

 

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When I first sat down in the cinema, I thought I would be watching another good guy vs adversity movie in which Denzel ultimately triumphs. I had only seen the trailer and knew nothing else about this movie, but being a Denzel and Director Robert Zemeckis ( Cast Away, Contact & the Back to the Future trilogy) fan, I was in. You can imagine my surprise when from the opening scene, it appeared Denzel was not a good guy…..well not entirely anyway.

This movie opens with Flight Attendant Katerina ( Velazquez) waking in a hotel room, obviously a stopover and surrounded by the remnants of a big night. She wakes airline pilot Whip Whitaker (Oscar nominated for this role Washington) who not only finishes some stale alcohol but then proceeds to snort a huge line of coke. A few minutes later, Whitaker is strutting purposefully down the hotel hallway looking every inch the handsome, self assured, experienced, in-control dream pilot we all hope is in the cockpit when we board a flight. And he is all of those things.

 

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He is also a functioning alcoholic.

Whitaker boards the plane and immediately takes control. The flight leaves in very bad weather and a major emergency soon eventuates. This is where things get really interesting.

The next 10 or 15 minutes of the movie are completely enthralling. We see a plane begin to lose functions one by one….oh this is a bad, bad day …..and it would seem like death for all aboard is imminent. But the highly capable Whitaker employs some manoeuvers that are mind bending and look amazing on the screen. The scenes are tense, seeminly authentic, moving, make you hold you breath incredible. The result is the plane does crash land but only 6 people die.

 

2012, FLIGHT

 

As Whitaker wakes in the hospital, the crash investigator types are there to start proceedings. The pilot is a hero but they have a job to do. Here we are introduced to Charlie Anderson (Greenwood), Whitakers long time friend, colleague and champion. He will play a major role in the ensuing drama and remains unquestioningly if not pragmatically loyal to the errant Whitaker. We also meet Whitaker’s drug dealer/friend Harling Mays (Goodman), a man who for good or bad, knows his stuff and knows how to help Whitaker when he most needs it.

In the hospital, Whitaker meets the gorgeous but damaged addict Nicole (Reilly) and relationship develops. She has dark demons of her own and together, this could have been such an important part of this story. But alas, the writers and Director never give Nicole  the attention she deserves. She does, however, provide calm for Whitaker and seems to bring out long suppressed emotions and feelings that he himself seems quite surprised to see re-emerge.

 

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As the crash investigation continues, even knowing what we know, I still wanted Whitaker to triumph. He valiantly tries to overcome his alcoholism but the lure proves too much for him time and again. Each time he has a decision to make, I held my breath and was truly disappointed when the demon won. So too were the rest of my fellow cinema patrons judging by the collective sighs and mutterings that echoed my own.

The crash investigation itself was remarkable. I found these parts of the movie fascinating as we watched the puzzle pieces all put back together. The lawyer Hugh Lang (Cheadle) was particularly interesting as he did all he could for his client, sometimes against seemingly insurmountable odds. The underlying fact, that we are aware of from the begining of the movie, is this was indeed a case of equipment failure. It just needed to be proven. The fact that Whitaker may have been intoxicated during the flight sometimes seems almost secondary.

 

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This is a movie not about a plane crash and who was to blame, but about human frailty and suffering. It is about redemption, humanity, love, compassion, forgiveness….all the things that make for a great drama. Denzel was nominated for a Best Actor Oscar for this role. Was it warranted? Of course. Denzel is one of the finest actors of our generation and I loved seeing him in the role of heroic anti hero. This a good movie but not a great one. The ending was particularly surprising and seemed like a cop out to me. I would like to have seen the resolve the movie promised continue through to the end but it was not to be. But it is still a movie well worth seeing.

If you are at all interested in the ‘can that really happen in real life’ aspect of the in flight piloting, try here for some insight into not only this movie but Hollywood’s take on airplane disasters in general. A great read on it’s own.