There is a new threat to the world: The Mandarin (played by Ben Kingsley), a worse version of Osama Bin-Laden, with an even worse hair style that reminds me of those old yogis back in the 70s who faked all that enlightenment, but in reality they were just old perverts who loved sex, drugs, and rock and roll.  By the way, there’s nothing wrong with loving sex, drugs, and rock and roll — just be honest about it.   Anyway…The Mandarin!  Or…The Kingsley!  Well, Kingsley just hates America and all that we stand for, so he’s blowing stuff and people up around the world that directly hurts America.   Unfortunately for Kingsley, one of the people who gets hurt during one of his terrorist attacks is Happy Hogan (played by Jon Favreau).  That really angers Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr., of course), and so Downey tells the press that he’s going to kill Kingsley, and issues a challenge to Kingsley to come to Downey’s house for a fight, then gives his address to make it easier for Kingsley to find Downey!

Well, guess who comes knocking on Downey’s doors…with missiles?  The end result of this first round between Kingsley and Downey is that Downey’s better Iron Man suits have been destroyed, leaving him with a prototype that has more bugs than an American car made in the 90s.  Downey is forced to shed his armor for most of the movie, relying mostly on his intelligence and a few trusted friends (old and new).   And that leads us to the heart of the story, also known as the story’s spine or the theme.  Who and what is Downey without the Iron Man suits?  Is the suit more important, or is it the man?  These questions have already been answered from the first “Iron Man” movie.  Still, it’s nice to see these questions explored more fully in “Iron Man 3.”

It’s also nice to see a much more vulnerable Downey, who now has panic attacks since taking part in the NYC battle against aliens in “The Avengers.”  For those who’ve never had a panic attack, seeing Downey quickly turn into a frightened child may seem funny and unrealistic.  But for those who’ve had them, that’s how it happens: a sudden explosion of negative feelings that have been suppressed and building up over time that overwhelms your body and mind.

“Iron Man 3” is narrated by Downey, but he’s not telling the story to the audience.  He’s telling the story to one person, and you have to wait until the end credits are over to see who it is.  That bonus footage is one of my memorable moments of this movie.

Another memorable, movie moment of this third part of the “Iron Man” trilogy is the first scene when we see Jon Favreau.  Damn, he got fat!  He looks like NJ Governor Chris Christie!  Actually, he looks like he ate Chris Christie!

The top spot for my memorable, movie moment of “Iron Man 3” is the scene when Downey confronts Kingsley for the first time.  Kingsley — The Mandarin — is not quite what you would expect.  That’s all I can say without spoiling certain plot elements.

Although “Iron Man 3” is a worthy addition to the “Iron Man” trilogy, the first movie is still the best.  That’s why I bought only the first “Iron Man” movie on Blu-ray, and when I buy a movie, you know it’s a really good one.

M

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