Iron Man 3: Musings on Terrorism and America

Amid recent acts of terrorism that has been happening to the United States, I cannot help but surmise that writers wanted a plot that is not only relevant but will also strike a chord to the American people.

Terrorism. What comes to mind when you hear the word? Wars, 9/11, bombs, Muslims-- I bet you even have a mindset in your head of what a terrorist is supposed to look like. Well, The Mandarin was portrayed in the television as a man in long robes, a beard, having an army of rebels located in dry regions of the world, and a rigid heartless expression. What you don't realize is that a terrorist could be anyone, can come from anywhere, and doesn't have to look like Osama bin Laden.

He could be an idealistic and seemingly harmless smart chap right from where you live, and from countless superhero stories (or even everyday life) you should know that the bad guy is not always who they should be, and even the purest of intentions can be corrupted by greed and desperation.

One would like to believe that the war is only happening in places such as Iran or Pakistan, but actually it can be much, much closer to home. As long as there are people who are being oppressed and treated wrongly, no one is safe anywhere.

Iron Man as a Symbol
Then I came to thinking, Iron Man can symbolize what is happening to America at the moment. He thought he was powerful, invincible, and in control, but little by little he comes to the realization that he is also very vulnerable.

"A famous man once said, we create our own demons. Never mind who the famous man is."

He has made some decisions that has made some people mad, and unfortunately in this case, things that happen in the past did not just remain in the past-- it bit him in the butt, hard. He took on the world when maybe it was best to take a step back.

A lesson on Humility
The great thing about Iron Man is amidst all the gadgets and glamor, he's not too proud as to not admit when he does make a mistake. He gets knocked back to reality and does his best to make amends.

As much as I like seeing Iron Man being self-assured and cocky, I also like moments when he becomes almost human. (In this movie, it was when Jarvis flew him off to rural Tennessee to escape from an aerial attack to his Malibu Mansion.) Not surrounded by his high status world he gets to see how the other end lives, kick serious butt, and find himself in the process.

He realizes that he isn't defined by what he has or what he has built-- Strip away the suit and everything else he has, and he still is as he declared in the very first movie, "I am Iron Man".

In the end
Iron Man learned that he too has limits and there are times when he has to take a step back to see better and to find a better course of action. Decisions out of anger or revenge can blindside you into going into wars, with consequences you might not be prepared to deal with later on.

90% --Highly entertaining with uber story-line. Touching! Awesome! Repeatable!

P.S. On a lighter note, Robert Downey Jr. is the man! You can't watch Iron Man 3 without coming out with that conclusion!

Iron Man Trivia
Kevin Feige described the film as "a full-on Tony Stark-centric movie... He's stripped of everything, he's backed up against a wall, and he's gotta use his intelligence to get out of it." -- And I hate to spoil it for you, but what the heck, he gets out of every damn situation awesomely every time ;)

Robert Downey Jr. pushed to get Gwyneth Paltrow to wear a suit since the second film, and Kevin Feige approved: "We are bored by the damsel in distress. But sometimes we need our hero to be desperate enough in fighting for something other than just his own life. So, there is fun to be had with 'Is Pepper in danger or is Pepper the savior?' over the course of this movie."--As self-absorbed as Tony Stark is, I don't think he'd object to having a woman on top ;)