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Iron Man 3 Review – Spoiler Free


Who is Tony Stark? Who is Iron Man? Those questions are given a lot of attention in the third film in the Iron Man trilogy. Taking place after the world changing events of The Avengers, Iron Man 3 is really a sequel to that film, and yet, it seems to exist in a universe entirely separate from it. None of the characters from The Avengers appear in Iron Man 3. There is no S.H.E.I.L.D., no of Thunder, no sign that The Avengers ever happened, except, Tony Stark’s struggle to overcome some perfectly understandable anxiety after having pushed himself to his limits to save the world and almost failed. If I had one problem with the film, it’s that it could have been clearer that this was the reason The Avengers were kept at arms length by Stark.


Absent aliens and gods, the big villain this time orchestrates a very loud echo of 911, down to a fair imitation of Osama Bin Laden. There’s also a fairly timely message about chickens coming home to roost. With the recent events in Boston, you can’t help but see many parallels. But it’s important to remember that this is escapist fun. It’s not the movie’s responsibility to wrap everything up in a tidy rah-rah bow.

There are some marvelous twists in the film and I don’t want to reveal too much about the plot, but I really loved the villain of the movie and his motivations, which are more believable than the standard comic book villain. Fans of the comic book may be a little disappointed because it rewrites what was a prominent place for The Mandarin character in the Marvel Universe. But that’s a standard trope of super hero movies anyway. Film is an entirely different medium and deserves differing story treatments than comic books, which are more serial in nature.

To date, Iron Man movies have been primarily about Robert Downey Jr and his amazing ability to inhabit the role. Witty humor, a certain disregard for his own personal safety, and the playboy lifestyle fits like a glove on Downey Jr. But the third film expands the focus to the rest of the cast to the point where they are literally wearing the suit. This is both a strength and weakness of the film. I always like to see Downey Jr performing at his peak, as I believe he was in this film, but he’s taken the character a long way and it’s good to see other story arcs developed.

End the end, the suit doesn’t make the man, the man makes the suit. That’s a lesson we can all stand to hear again. Iron Man 3 is a great, I’m going to see it again tonight in IMAX.

Finally, do stick around for the post-credits tag. Just a heads up.

7 thoughts on “Iron Man 3 Review – Spoiler Free”

  1. I saw the IM marathon yesterday and came right back for the 10am showing of IM3. I loved it. It was funnier than I expected, and that last action sequence was amazing. I did like the Mandarin story, even if it was different from the comic. I think the artistic license was well used here. And yes, the ending was worth sitting through the credits, especially when you realize how it ties in with the story you just saw. I’ll see it again before it leaves theaters, I’m sure of it.

  2. I am trying to decide whether or not to take my kids (10 and 7). The commercials all mention some scenes being too intense. They loved The Avengers, but we watched it at home not in the theater. Without spoilers, would you say that Iron Man 3 is similar to Avengers in intensity? Thanks!

    1. There is far more depictions of death in IM3 then in the Avengers. That being said, I am still temped to take my 5 year old nephew when I go see it again.

      1. I took my 7 year old son to see it and I regret it. It’s much more realistic in its depiction of violence and the villains are a bit scarier in this than the other marvel films. Even though he’s seen all of the other Marvel, Gi Joe and Transformers flicks, this was on a different level of violence than those and I wouldn’t have taken him if I had known.

  3. Disney fans will certainly recognize an echo (or rip off?) of Syndrome from The Incredibles as far as villain motivation goes. I guess that is fair game since The Incredibles stole liberally from all comic books.
    I really enjoyed the movie, but you have to turn your brain off a few times. There are all kinds of continuity and plot holes.

  4. The Worst Iron Man movie yet!!!!!!!!!
    Robert Downey Jr plays his part well but you can only work with what is given to you. The rest of the cast preforms well but again you can only work with what is given to you.
    This movie promises the Mandarin and gives us a big helping of “kill the story line” what the hell were you thinking Writers, Directors, Marvel Entertainment, Disney, and anyone who worked on this story. Shame on you all!!!!!

    From the beginning this series has gone way out of the box when it comes to keeping true to the story line and this one just knocks it way out of the state (forget about out of the park) if it was not for the tie in’s with the overall story line (Avengers) I would not have gone to see this and would have same myself a lot of cash and time going to the movies.

    Can someone please read a comic or watch an animated series before putting this type of garbage on the big screen. I need to be invited to the next focus group.

    Instead of making more garbage like this please explore the other characters that could have graced the screen and maybe you would have had a hit, let’s stop re-hashing the same old stuff over and over again and give us something NEW.

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