Thursday, May 08, 2008

Real Live Women

Image Hosted by

Caught Iron Man last night. Not bad. All the best parts of the movie were dialogue (ok and adorable robot jokes). The action seemed secondary. When dude is actually flying around in the Iron Man suit, the witty repartee he has with the AI is more entertaining than the explosions. It actually felt like a smart movie about relationships wrapped in a dumb action movie, like one of the many Sesame Street scenes that is ostensibly about counting but actually built around an obscure pop-culture reference.

The whole movie is more of a character study of a gifted man-child's interactions with assorted parental figures. Gwenyth Paltrow's mom'd out Pepper Potts is great, flipping what could have been a real patriarchal hot secretary role into a bad ass who lets Robert Downey Jr. know at every occasion how hopeless he is without her. Save one creepy Oedipal scene where they dance, entirely downplaying some pretty creepy sexual tension was a good look. I can't even imagine how much restraint it takes to make a summer blockbuster without a damsel in distress. I guess at the end Paltrow sort of fits that category but the assembly line movie would have had at least one shot of gratuitous cleavage and some sort of "you saved me" b/w "i love you" situation. Iron Man barely comes anywhere close to that.

You could make the argument that she's playing the Carmela Soprano role, willing to look the other way for her man's countless indiscretions in exchange for security and some nice things. But she doesn't seem all that bitter about the bitch-disposal part of her job. More likely is she's buying low and putting an emotional investment into a genius who could be a stand-up guy once he grows up a little.

And the movie really is about dude growing up a little. Even the prying reporter who he digs out in the first five minutes of the movie is a recurring character who gets vindicated when all is said and done.

(She was kind of a horse face though.)

Labels: , ,