Like many of you, I saw Iron Man 2 this weekend. It was actually the midnight screening on the local (real) IMAX at Celebration Cinema. I had a great time with this movie, and felt it was far more fun than the original. It also had a greater sense of pace and handled a good number of leading characters very fairly and even handed, with much dignity for them all. Even Black Widow was handled with proper respect for the character. Having read some Black Widow comics, I was fully prepared for the character to be a very poor representation of the original, and was pleasantly surprised.
All of the action was turned up a few notches, and there wasn’t a very poor and generic villain that nobody had ever heard of this time around. Instead, we had two villains to worry about. An odd business tycoon that served as the generic villain of this film, but then an actual member of the Iron Man rogues gallery: Whiplash. About time, Favreau. The first film felt too much like Ang Lee’s Hulk by the end, with a villain that nobody really knew about, nor cared about enough to love to hate. Granted, he wasn’t that extreme, but you get the idea.
What did I mean, about movie being better than the first?
The X-Men films have, to say the least, been a mixed bag. When Bryan Singer’s X-Men premiered, it was unlike anything that the world had seen or expected of a filmed version of the comic book. It was fun, the characters were mostly well done, and it had some added emotional weight to it. X2: X-Men United continued that journey, although I still have no idea what mutant is controlling Xavier. I didn’t recognize him from the comics, and spent a long time trying to figure out who he was supposed to be. X-Men: The Last Stand was a tour-de-force of mutants, with death running rampant. My only regret was that Phoenix was not visually what she could have been. The end of X2 foreshadowed her appearance, and the film never delivered on that promise.
This is the start of the summer movie season, and it begins today with the origin of Wolverine. This month also features a couple of sequels that many would probably consider to be unnecessary: Terminator Salvation and Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. The month ends with the next potential masterpiece by Pixar: Up.
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I figured that, since we’re getting closer to the summer movie schedule, now would be as good a time as any to post my list of movies that I anticipate seeing over the course of 2009. It’s definitely a truncated list, based on what I knew was coming out at the end of 2008. All release dates are subject to change, and additions to the list are a definite possibility.
The list of films is grouped by month. It starts out with April and goes to December. At the beginning of each month, I’ll be posting a new entry more information about each of the movies for that month, including (if available) a trailer for the film. I’ll also be expanding on my reasons for wanting to see the film, and whatever else strikes me at the time.