Sequels are in general not as good as the first movie in a series. However, this isn’t your ordinary sequel. Iron Man 2 takes everything that made the first movie brilliant, and expanded on it. In this film, Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) has an ego overload as he no longer can handle being Iron Man responsibly. This angers Pepper (Gwyneth Paltrow), who is the new CEO of Stark Industries. To make matters worse, Ivan Venko (Mickey Rourke) is taking revenge on Tony after something his father did decades ago. Along for the ride are Lt. Colonel James Rhodes (Don Cheadle replacing Terrence Howard from the first film), who becomes War Machine, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) the head of S.H.I.E.L.D., and Natalie Rushman (Scarlett Johansson) a new assistant to Stark Industries.
Without ruining too many details, this film delves into many different categories. The humor and action are still very much present, however, we get to know Tony Stark and his history a lot more in this film. We also get to see some great cameos from Garry Shandling and the director Jon Favreau, returning as his role as Happy Hogan.
I honestly believe this film is stronger than the first. Many other reviews have said the contrary, but I think there is a lot more to this film than the first. The characters are a lot more developed, and the addition of Cheadle only adds more to it. The film does, at times, seem to overdo some of the action, but that is something I expected going into the film.
If you are a fan of Marvel comic books, there are a lot of references to other heroes in the series. I won’t ruin any, but keep on a look out for anything and everything. Also, make sure to stick around until after the credits are done. As with every film in the Marvel series (the first Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk) there is a key scene that ties the films together. This one will definitely not disappoint fans one bit.
I’m not the hugest fan of superhero films, but this one will also resonate well with viewers who aren’t interested in anything comic book related. This leaves a lot of speculation on to what the third film will be about, and does a great job tying loose ends while still leaving a lot hidden.
Final Grade: 9.5/10