ALTER EGO: Downey Jr. gets into character. Below, with Gwyneth Paltrow.
Midway the newly-arrived latest instalment of the Iron Man franchise, one gets the impression that our noble, fast-talking hero Tony Snark has gotten in way over his head. An elusive terrorist who calls himself the Mandarin (a barely recognisble Ben Kingsley) is on the loose and a bizarre team of fiends with strange fiery powers are wreaking havoc all over New York City, decimating infrastructure and claiming scores of lives.
Things seem to only get worse when Snark suffers the utter destruction of his state-of-the-art Malibu lair. But as he proves yet again, he can roll with the punches and emerges as a champion of the American people he so loyally serves, but especially when the life of the President is threatened and that of his beloved Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow).
In a nutshell, as helmed by Shane Black, it's zany, zippy, rip-roaring fun buoyed by a clever-funny script and delightful, hyperkinetic action sequences. Robert Downey Jr. reprises the title role with snarky charm, endless charisma, and relish. He reteams with the ever-reliable Don Cheadle as Colonel James Rhodes, who gets to suit up, too, as the Iron Patriot. Appearances by Jon Favreau, Rebecca Hall, and a suspicious Guy Pearce round out the main cast.
Whether Iron Man 3 is the best in the series is debatable, but it's absolutely the most entertaining to date, packing heat and adrenaline, humour and excitement, in almost equal measure. Tyrone's Verdict: B+