Tag Archives: Robert Downey Jr

Captain America: Civil War

Captian America Civil War

The theme this superhero summer season seems to be inner fighting. We’ve had Batman vs Superman, and later we will have the Xmen vs Apocalypse and his four horsemen. But arguably the most hotly anticipated superhero brawl is Team Captain America vs Team Iron Man in Captain America: Civil War. But can the winner be the audience this time around?

When the Avengers are involved in an incident that results in civilian casulties the government decide they need restrictions and asks them to sign The Sokovia Accords. However the team is divided with Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jnr.) leading up the side to sign while Steve Rodgers (Chris Evans) heading up the team to resist. Can the two sides reconsile or will events drive them further into conflict?

It’s perhaps unfair to compare Civil War to BvS but Civil War is miles ahead a better film than DC’s output last month.

For two hours we’re treated to a rollercoaster of action, revelations and the breaking apart of the Avengers. The film does a great act of balancing its huge ensemble cast with everyone getting a good moment and a motivation for their actions. It easily could have been Avengers 2.5 but the Russo brothers keep Cap at the centre of it all with him being our moral guide through the action. However even though this is Cap’s film we still get a well rounded argument to the Slovakia Accord. We can see why Iron Man and co decide to sign the accords just as we understand why Cap and his friends don’t.

Last time I criticised Winter Soldier for being a bit humourless at times but Civil War provides lots of funny moments amid the action and arguing. The new characters are introduced well with Tom Holland providing a lot of humour and showing why rebooting Spiderman (again!) may not be such a bad idea. It was great seeing him interact with the veteran superheroes. Chadwick Bosworth also makes an good impression as T’Chilla combining vengeance with a royal refinement and intelligence.

We are also treated to a bit more character development and depth to returning newbies The Vision (Paul Bettany) and Scarlert Witch (Elizabeth Olsen – proving they kept the right twin from Age of Ultron). Bucky ((Sebastan Stan) also makes a welcome return and builds more on already complex and tortured character.

There is some finely executed fight scenes on display here with a nail biting mission in the film’s opening to the Iron Man/Captain America/Winter Soldier battle shown in the trailer. Of course the main event we were all waiting for is the epic showdown between Team Captain America and Team Iron Man. Luckily it does not disappoint, it’s brimming with excitement and the action choreography is brilliantly executed with style and humour.

If there’s any slight bump in the road it’s Daniel Buhl’s villain with ambiguous motivations and end goals. At first he seems interesting and Buhl is a good actor but as soon as his endgame is revealed it all goes downhill and numerous plot holes come to light. In the end he joins the long list of Marvel movies uninteresting villains (Loki excepted of course). However if this is a mis step it’s a minor one in a movie that deserves to do well at the box office this year.

Rating 4.5/5 -intense, dramatic, hilarious, roll on Avengers: Infinity Wars

Also for the Community fans out there did you spot Jim Rash’s cameo? Let’s hope the Russos’ continue the cameos in the next installments.

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Avengers: Age of Ultron

There were high expectations from Marvel and director Joss Whedon following on from 2012 mega hit The Avengers. But would too much hype mean all my expectations will be crushed Hulk style?

Having grow tired and concerned over whether the Avengers can stop every battle coming their way Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jnr.) convinces Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) to help create an A.I that will help defend Earth. Unfortunately his creation Ultron (voice by James Spader) decides the best way to save Earth is to destroy the Avengers and humanity. Teaming up with a pair of gifted twins (Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen) they plan to bring the Avengers down and the world to its knees.

While the film doesn’t reach the dizzy heights of the first Avengers movie it’s still a great summer blockbuster. Theres some nice character moments to develop members of the team like Black Widow (Scarlet Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner). While there isn’t as many Whedon-isms as I would like there are still some very funny one liners. There was a surprising amount of swearing in the movie and a lot of innuendos. There was some hilarious moments such as the Avengers trying to lift Thor’s hammer. I loved Chris Hemsworth’s worried expression as Captain America (Chris Evans) nudged the hammer. The film also had some nice emotional scenes such as the Avengers coping after having been given a massive beat down by Ultron and the twins. Ultron made for a good villain even if he isn’t as awesome as Loki. We also got plenty of drama as the Avengers came into conflict over Tony’s actions, building up some nice tension between iron Man and Captain America which shall continue into the next Captain America movie.

Not everything worked. The middle of the movie dragged a bit for me. I didn’t believe the romance between Banner and Black Widow. They have better chemistry as friends. I wasn’t completely sold on the twins Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch either. Quicksilver suffered from the fact that X Men: Days of Future Past did the character so much better. Scarlet Witch just felt a bit undeveloped but could be more interesting in future installments.

There are fears that Marvels run of movies will become stale, but while they continue to make enjoyable summer movies and have a great team of actors and directors, I think they still have a way to go before we start seeing a real dip in quality.

Rating 4/5 – not quite the smash that the first film was but still a great superhero movie

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Iron Man 3

The summer blockbusters are here! And first out the gate is the third in the Iron Man Franchise. The first film was a surprise hit which propelled Robert Downey Jr to the A-list. The second one was ok but didn’t have the spark of the first film, feeling more like it was settling the scene forĀ  The Avengers. So how does this film stack up?

First the plot. Tony Stark is trying to recover from the events of the aforementioned Avengers film, staying up all night making new Iron Man suits (42 and counting) and neglecting live in girlfriend Pepper (Gwyneth Paltrow). Not that they have time to worry about relationship drama when dealing with a new nemesis called The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) who isn’t afraid to take the fight directly to Stark himself.

This film sees the Iron Man franchise back on form. New director and co writer Shane Black is a smart fit for this film. Having worked with Robert Downey Jnr on Kiss Kiss Bang Bang he plays to the actor’s strengths in this film, making sure Tony Stark is full of the witty one liners that makes him such a joy to watch. This is probably the funniest of the Iron Man films to date.

As well as being hilarious with several laugh at loud moments, the film also delivers on an emotional level with Tony and Pepper’s relationship getting ample screen time. The couple are great together, bringing a real warmth to their scenes-probably helps that this is their third time playing these characters and so they fall back easily into their role.

There are also some jaw dropping action sequences that Black directs with great assurance considering this is only his second film. It’s hard to pick the best one but stand outs definitely include the attack on Stark’s home (as seen in the trailers) and a daring rescue to save the passengers on a falling airplane.

Of the supporting cast its great to Don Cheadle get more action this time as War Machine/Iron Patriot while Ben Kingsley is fun as The Mandarin and thankfully not overused in the role. Guy Pearce is suitably smug in his role as a business rival to Tony but ultimately isn’t that interesting. Rebecca Hall does well in what she’s given as Tony’s old flame Mya but unfortunately isn’t in it enough to show what she is really capable of.

There are rumours that this could be Robert Downey Jr’s last Iron Man film. I obviously can’t reveal how this film ends but if this ended the last time we see him put on the Iron Man suit he definitely bows out on a high.

Rating 4/5-Start the Summer Blockbuster season in style and prepare to let yourself laugh, gasp and be amazed.

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