Iron Man 2: The sequel to the hit 2008 blockbuster Iron Man, Iron Man 2 succeeds in returning us to a world wherein the witty Tony Stark (Iron Man) struggles with five major major problems. (1) His battle with the U.S. government over control of the Iron Man suit. (2) The appearance of a new villain who has created technology that is a duplicate of Iron Man's own weapons and power source. (3) A new creator of military grade weapons who vies with Tony over domination of the weapons manufacturing market. (4) His relationship with Ms. Potts is getting heated, and (5) Stark's dying. Oops... SPOILER ALERT!!!
The plot runs reasonably smoothly, though the pace does take a while in coming. After the pace is set however, the movie delivers. The action scenes are wonderfully shot and choreographed and the humor that we've come to expect from Stark seems to have transcended to encompass multiple other characters, which sounds like a bad thing but really isn't. Most of the new characters, with the exception of the main villain, Ivan Vanko who came across as an annoying nuisance, where quite fun to watch. Don Cheadle's role as Colonel Rhodes seemed to be a great improvement from Terrence Howard's portrayal of the character in the first movie and might I point out how fun it was to watch Jon Favreau reprise his role of Stark's chauffeur/bodyguard, Happy Hogan?
Also, there were multiple hidden references to the upcoming Avengers movie, with one example being Captain America's shield which can be seen in one shot when Tony uses it to prop up one of his latest experiments. Additionally, if you sit through all the credits, which I forced my forgiving friends into doing, you can briefly see Thor's hammer.
All in all with it's great action sequences and nonstop humor, Iron Man 2 might in fact be one of the only sequels to come out that is, dare I say it, better than its predecessor.
Rating: 8 (close to excellent)
The British science fiction film called Moon didn't get much publicity in the US and frankly the budget of the movie seemed slightly low. With that being said Moon should have had more hype in the US! This was a great movie. The lead role was played by Sam Rockwell who subsequently played the weapons manufacturer, mentioned above, in Iron Man 2. Rockwell's performance was solid, though I've had trouble taking him seriously since I first saw him in Galaxy Quest where he played the ridiculously dim-witted Guy Flegman, and his role in Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy didn't help either. However, even with multiple humorous scenes, he came off as a serious character, which I enjoyed seeing greatly.
The story follows the repetitive exploits of Sam Bell, an employee of a lunar mining operation whose job is to make sure all the mining equipment is running smoothly. He also happens to be the moon's sole inhabitant.
Without spoiling too much, things go awry when he gets into an accident on the moon's surface and upon waking up after the accident believes GERTY, his computer partner and only companion has been withholding information from him.
The movie runs at a slow pace, and you'll find yourself surprised that the film was only two hours long after watching it through. But the suspense and humor all quicken near the second half of the movie when Sam comes in contact with a mysterious person also on the moon.
I feel like I should stop here. Not only do I not want to spoil anything in the movie, but these are supposed to be quick movie reviews.
Moon is great! If you like Sci-Fi or drama, I highly suggest renting it. It is for sure a diamond in the ruff!
Rating: 7.5 (close to excellent)