Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


THE INVINCIBLE IRON MAN (2007). Directed by Patrick Archibald and Jay Oliva.

This full-length animated movie was released direct-to-video before the theatrical films Iron Man and Iron Man 2. Trouble begins when Anthony Stark (Marc Worden) initiates a project to raise an ancient Chinese city, along with the temple of an ancient warlord known as the Mandarin [actually Iron Man's arch-enemy in the comics]. In a revised origin story, Stark creates the Iron Man armor as a reaction not only to his heart being damaged in an explosion but to the threat caused by 4 "elementals" seeking rings of power that will help resuscitate the Mandarin. [Although it turns out that he had already developed numerous Iron Man suits in private.] A sub-plot deals with Stark's problems with his father Howard (John McCook) and the board of Stark Industries. There is also a pretty young lady, Lei Me (Gwendolyn Meo), who doesn't seem to know which side she's on. Although the animation and voice characterizations are acceptable [if not necessarily first-rate] The Invincible Iron Man suffers from a mediocre storyline. The elementals are uninteresting antagonists, and the Mandarin [now a battle with him might have been something] doesn't even show up until the movie's almost over, although there is a lively fight with a good-looking dragon. Stark's secretary Pepper Potts is given a British accent for some reason. Stark's status as a lover boy is given emphasis in Greg Johnson's screenplay with him cavorting in a hot tub with a gal and showing up late for an appointment sporting a lipstick kiss. For more on the comic book adventures of Iron Man see The Silver Age of Comics. For Iron Man paperback fiction click here.

Verdict: Big, noisy, and still a bit on the dull side. **.

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