[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=4719&w=o[/img]Title: Iron Man 2
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Mickey Rourke, Sam Rockwell, Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jon Favreau, Samuel L. Jackson
Directed by: Jon Favreau
Written by: Justin Theroux, Stan Lee
Runtime: 123 Minutes
Release Date: 9/28/2010
Synopsis: (4 out of 5)
Video: (5 out of 5)
Audio: (5 out of 5)
Extras: (5 out of 5)
Overall: (5 out of 5)
Iron Man 2 drops in immediately as the first Iron Man is ending. Tony Stark (Downey) is giving his speech where he announces to the world that he is in fact Iron Man. The only difference this time is that we are watching the speech as it is being reported on Russian TV in the home of Ivan Vanko (Rourke) as he is tending to his dying father Anton Vanko. As the opening credits cycle, we see ties between Anton Vanko and Howard Stark and even their co-development of the arc reactor technology from the first movie that fuels the Iron Man suit.
Fast forward six months and we catch up with Tony Stark as he launches ‘Stark-Expo’, which is basically a contest to help aspiring geniuses launch their new technologies. During the launch of the event, Tony steps backstage and we see him use a blood toxicity tester on himself and discover that there is something wrong with Mr. Stark. Now, convinced he is dying, Stark makes a series of reckless decisions that begin to alienate him from those that would help him and send him spiraling down a path that could ultimately lead not only to his death, but to the death of his legacy as well.
I really enjoyed Iron Man 2 as a whole. The action sequences were insane, the acting was pretty good and the story was not the typical comic book adaptation that we have been fed for so long. Once again, Downey did an excellent job portraying Tony Stark in all of his arrogant, brash and neurotic glory as well as showing how fragile and dependent Stark is on the technology that initially saved his life. Mickey Rourke was great as the cold and callous Ivan Vanko/Whiplash however; I would have liked to have seen more detail about the other motivators for his vengeance quest against the Stark family.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=4720&w=o[/img]The rest of the cast did an acceptable job performing their roles as well and for the most part, I never had a feeling that there were too many characters or story lines to keep up with. That being said, I will also say that I really missed Terrance Howard in the role of ‘Roadie’. Cheadle did an adequate job and all but, Howard’s performance in the first movie clearly defined the role and in my opinion, Cheadle couldn’t reproduce Howard’s personality.
Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense sci-fi action, and violence, and some language.
Iron Man 2 has been given a 1080p AVC MPEG-4 transfer and the results do vary but never as a result of the transfer process. In other words, I think that it is a spot on representation of what the filmmakers intended. The opening scene for instance, was set in Russia in the winter time and the blue overcast feeling of the location translated as such onto film. The tone of a cold and bleak existence in the rundown apartment of the Vanko’s was very accurately depicted by the look of the movie. On the other end of the spectrum, the racing scenes set in Monaco and landscapes set at the Stark Malibu residence were vividly alive with colors and brilliant shading when compared to the opening Vanko scene.
Flesh tones are flawless and the color palette is so well represented across the entire spectrum that I can’t help but be in awe of it all. I haven’t seen a movie that looked this good since Avatar and don’t know that I have ever reviewed one that could rival this transfer. There is so much detail to be seen that I found myself rewinding several scenes just to take it all in. This is the type of transfer that actually gets better and better the more times you look at it. Paramount did a phenomenal job on this one and should be commended. Black levels are just as good as the rest of the transfer and shadow delineation is downright staggering. I even did some comparisons to the original Iron Man and discovered that there is no comparison. This transfer rivals the original in every way, hands down.
What can I say about Iron Man 2’s 5.1 DTS-HD MA audio but “WOW”! I never thought the day would arrive that I would actually say this but, I believe Iron Man 2 could give 'War of the Worlds' a run for its money in the bass department. Yeah, I know, I can’t believe I said it either. This audio transfer is way more than I could have hoped for and is just outright awesome.
Every collision, explosion and ground shaking scene fill the room with low end nirvana. This is one that I would have to say has very intrusive and downright RUDE bass!!!! And that is a good thing! :T What’s better is that there are several scenes that involve separate low end frequencies colliding but that never get too muddy. There are some wonderful sweeps across the spectrum that just brought a smile to my face.
As for the rest, dialogue is sharp and clear with tons of texture to the voices. Mickey Rourke’s gruff and gravelly voice is a great center channel reference. Action scenes are not only all about the bass either. Gunfire, explosions, flying, crashing through walls and car races are all so well presented that I just can’t say enough good things about them. Separation between different sounds all work in concert in a given scene to create a symphony of destruction and chaos that can really put your system to the test. This is the type of audio presentation that really shows off the benefits of non-compressed, lossless HD audio and will be in hand to demo your system.
Paramount loaded this edition out! There are nearly three hours of bonus features as well as a DVD and digital copy of the movie.
- SHIELD data vault
- Director Commentary
- Ultimate Iron Man: Making of
- 6 Behind the scenes features
- 8 deleted scenes (HD)
- DVD and Digital Copy
As a movie, Iron Man 2 may not be the follow up we were all hoping it would be however; it is a very solid sequel to the original. I think Jon Favreau did an excellent job of staying on task to tell the story at hand while weaving the Avengers story line in and out so it all appears as one solid story line. I will say that I do think the middle of the movie dragged a bit but at the same time, I can’t tell you what it could have done without either. If you are a fan of the original or have been waiting for someone to release a “gotta have it!” Bluray, then be sure to go by and pick this one up next week because you really will not be disappointed. Until next time campers, have a good day and in case I don't see ya later, a good afternoon, a good evening, and a good night! :wave: