SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE MOVIE OR READ THE COMIC!
Their first mistake is they went full comedy. I know Marvel movies have a light, humorous quality to them, especially ones involving Tony Stark. His character has a naturally funny wit. But they are also action movies. Serious, life threatening shit takes place. The action is supposed to be broken up by humor. The movie isn’t supposed to be driven by it. This movie couldn’t go 60 seconds without making a joke, even during the big fight scenes.
Then we have Tony’s rock bottom period. Admittedly it was cool to see Tony not relying on the Iron Man suit for a little bit. And him being a complete dick to a child was hilarious. But then he leaves the kid in charge of repairing his Iron Man suit, which is clearly a simple task for a ten year old. While this is happening we replace the kid with a creepy dude who has a weird Tony fetish. And then the kid magically solves all of Tony’s PTSD anxiety. And the whole time the question is raised: what the fuck is happening and where is Iron Man in this Iron Man movie? But these are hardly the biggest concerns. What most concerning is that …
THEY TOOK A HUGE DUMP ON THE MANDARIN’S FACE!
The Mandarin is one of Iron Man’s arch villans. He is a descendant of Genghis Khan who spends his life essentially training to be the most evil fucker ever. As if that’s not enough, then he stumbles upon ten magic rings that make him God status powerful.
Obviously it was expected that they would have to dilute these powers a bit. But the rings would have made complete sense since Thor already happened. Even if they had scrapped the rings, he could’ve still been an evil terrorist dictator. But instead director Shane Black decided to say “fuck it” and made him a complete joke. He was just an actor hired by Aldrich Killian, who is apparently ”the real Mandarin.” Meanwhile he’s only in the comics for literally TWO PAGES before he SHOOTS HIMSELF IN THE FACE. What’s worse is Ben Kingsley was perfect as The Mandarin.
It’s like if halfway through The Dark Knight, Heath Ledger wiped off the make up and you found out some random asshole paid him to do it.
The end fight with 30-something Iron Man suits against a bunch of Extremis-powered soldiers did do some redeeming. But while they may have gotten the Extremis healing/fire powers right, there’s one huge detail they left out. In the Extremis story arch Tony alters the Extremis virus to allow the majority of his suit to grow out of his body, essentially making him the ultimate Iron Man.
Shane Black decided to take a slightly different route and have Tony blow every suit the fuck up, tying a nice little bow on the franchise … even though it’s not over