MCU Moments: Iron Man (2008)
Avengers: Infinity War is a mere 21 days away as I write this blog, and as the culmination of the MCU so far, it seemed appropriate to revisit some of the Marvel movies that have been pivotal along the way. Of course, when addressing the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s impossible to talk about any of it without acknowledging the film that started it all. Iron Man was released in 2008 despite all of the trepidation of Marvel solely financing a film for the first time. It was directed by Jon Favreau, and while the script went through several iterations, Mark Fergus, Hawk Ostby, Art Marcum, and Matt Holloway are credited for the screenplay. Of course, it debuted Robert Downey, Jr. as the titular character with an outstanding supporting cast in Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges, and Gwyneth Paltrow. Iron Man premiered in the United States on May 2, 2008 and ended up grossing $585 million worldwide by the end of its theatrical run. This is the movie that put Marvel Studios on the map, and its success gave way to the 18 film franchise we currently have.
So, what are some of the most memorable moments from Iron Man?
1) The Jericho Demonstration
Since a majority of the movie follows Tony’s change in perception after his experience in Afghanistan, the Jericho missile demonstration is one of the few glimpses we get of Tony Stark before his kidnapping. This moment encompasses Tony with his charm, showmanship, ego, and inability to see beyond himself. Of course, this scene is even more extraordinary whenever you find out that Downey actually wrote the short speech he delivers here. Also, visually, it’s a pretty unforgettable moment. The explosions in the background and the shockwaves sending sand back to the demonstration group is iconic.
2) The Great Escape
This sequence is fantastic in so many ways. First of all, we have Yinsen making the sacrifice play, which further launches Tony on his path of change. Then, of course, we get our first look at the Mark I suit. It looks like it truly is constructed out of the parts he had to work with in the cave, and it’s pretty incredible to see Tony take out his captors one by one in the giant suit. When he blows up their base and flies out from the flames, we get a visual that is triumphant and hard to forget.
3) The Final Showdown
First of all, Jeff Bridges does not get enough credit for being such a fantastic villain in this film. The twist of him being the one who attempted to have Tony killed is a pivotal moment in the film, and it makes the final showdown between he and Tony a memorable moment. Also, after having three Iron Man films released, I think we can all say this is one of the best Iron Man fight scenes we’ve ever received. Between the one-on-one moments and the overloading of the arc reactor, it’s a visually compelling sequence.
4) Final Press Conference
How can this moment not be included on the list? Tony has his cards and his instructions. S.H.I.E.L.D. already has his whole backstory prepared to go, and one comment from a journalist derails the whole trajectory of the press conference. It’s a memorable speech about Tony and him not being a hero, but his announcement that he is Iron Man is the perfect way to end this film. Also, while not the most exciting point, his Iron Man announcement is also the launching pad of the sequel.
So, we’ve made our opinions know, but what moments stand out from the original Iron Man movie for you?
Be sure to share them in the comments below, and be on the lookout next Friday as we highlight another MCU film that permanently changed the landscape of the franchise.
Mollie is a film enthusiast, aspiring writer/screenwriter, and a lover of all things Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Doctor Who. She is the co-founder of The Digital Shore (@thedigitalshore) and Above The Line (@atl_movies). You can follow her many adventures through Twitter and Instagram at @mcbeach.