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Is there a problem, Houston?

movie-reviews Updated: Oct 23, 2010 00:50 IST

Hindustan Times
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Iron man 2
Reliance BIG/Paramount, Rs 599
Rating:***

When you are saving the world time and again you may be forgiven for nursing an ego the size of Pacific Ocean. So when Tony Stark, a black-suited business leader in his dayjob, dismisses a US Congressional hearing, you smirk. When he says he “privatised world peace”, you smile. For Stark is Iron Man. You either get him or you don’t.

Iron Man has more steel in his demeanour than hormonal tear-wipes such as Superman and Batman.

This is, after all, Marvel Comics’s answer to the bodysuits from rival DC Comics’s stable. And this suits the peripatetic Robert Downey Jr just fine.

As Iron Man he gets to zip around without air traffic control, revelling all the time in the twitchiness of his Sherlock Holmes persona minus, thankfully, the British accent.

The sequel is better than most superhero follow-ups (X-Men’s Wolverine is another exception). It introduces a worthy villain in Ivan ‘Whiplash’ Vanko (played by the drooling Mickey Rourke, whose armour is a spiffier version of Amitabh Bachchan’s fairy-light suit in Yaarana).

It unravels technological puzzles passed on across generations (old video clues deciphered with new tech).

It resolves Iron Man’s awkward bond with his assistant Pepper Potts (played by an anodyne Gwynneth Paltrow). And it betters the radioactive technology powering the iron suit, setting up for an environmentally-friendlier Iron Man 3. Way to go.