October 26, 2016
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“Iron Man 2” reviews hit Web … 11 days before movie opens

So much for press embargoes that are supposed to prevent media outlets from reviewing movies before a film opens.

This morning, several movie sites and trade publications posted their “Iron Man 2” reviews. The premiere was held in Los Angeles last night, with stars Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson and others walking the red carpet. But the film doesn’t open in theaters until May 7 … a full 11 days away.


The Hollywood Reporter was unimpressed with Jon Favreau’s sequel, saying “everything fun and terrific about ‘Iron Man,’ a mere two years ago, has vanished.” THR critic Kirk Honeycutt says the CGI fight scenes “quickly become tedious, their outcomes never really in doubt and the mechanics rather clunky.” He also calls Iron Man “the Tin Man.”

Variety agrees, saying the sequel “isn’t as much fun as its predecessor” as it calls the beats “more familiar, the pacing more uneven.”

Drew McWeeny at HitFix liked the film, though he seems to acknowledge the film benefits from the goodwill of the first “Iron Man” film. “Let’s call this one the victory lap,” McWeeny writes.

Part of me wishes the film would make its own victory lap, and not celebrate the accomplishments of the first film.

UPDATE — More reviews have hit the Web as “Iron Man 2” prepares to open overseas later this week.

London’s Daily Mirror posts the most savage review to date, saying “Iron Man 2” is “a travesty – a mind-numbingly dull, chaotic and often unwatchable muddle. It might even be the ultimate masterclass in how not to make a movie.”

Harry Knowles of Ain’t It Cool News disagrees. In his rave, he says the film “kicks it up several notches across the board” and praises Ms. Johansson’s rear end. Classy. To think, he once shared the balcony with Roger Ebert. Come to think of it, that makes sense.

For a more balanced view, the British Web site HeyYouGuys says the sequel “just about pulls it off, but only just,” and goes on the complain that the overly talkative screenplay seems more focused on setting up “The Avengers” than it does in telling a good Iron Man story.

Who knows? Maybe the film works better than these reviews suggest. Too bad we have to wait 11 DAYS to find out!

About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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One Comment

  • April 28, 2010 | Permalink |

    This is so biased. There are a lot more positive reviews on the web than negative, but if i didn’t already know that and was relying on this article, Id think it was negative to mixed. The only negative reviews I’ve seen, in fact, have been the 3 or 4 you mentioned. Everything else was immensely positive.

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