Don Cheadle

‘Iron Man 3,’ ‘The Avengers,’ And the Thrill of Authorial Voice in Blockbusters

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Iron Man 3 opens with an arresting image — the destruction of three Iron Man suits, right in a row, bang bang bang — and a voice over from Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark, a bit of business about facing your demons that quickly degenerates into gibberish. “Never mind, I’m gonna start over,” he says, and the screen fades to black, thus concluding the first of the film’s many assurances that, while it is a mega-budgeted summer tent-pole movie, it is also the work of devilishly clever writer/director Shane Black — whose previous collaboration with Downey, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, included one of the most blissfully self-aware narration tracks in all of moviedom (“Don’t worry, I saw Lord of the Rings, I’m not gonna end this like 17 times”). And that’s the key to the movie’s success: beyond all the explosions and action set pieces and 3D wizardry, you can still hear a writer with a distinctive, entertaining voice. And that’s what separates films like this from their blockbuster brethren, which too often were clearly created by a committee.
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Flavorwire’s Guide to Movies You Need to Stream This Week

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Welcome to Flavorwire’s streaming movie guide, in which we help you sift through the scores of movies streaming on Netflix, Hulu, and other services to find the best of the recently available, freshly relevant, or soon to expire. This week, we’re in Iron Man 3 mode, with noteworthy flicks featuring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, and Ben Kingsley, plus additional titles featuring Matthew McConaughey, Nicole Kidman, Elliot Gould, Zac Efron, Edgar Ramirez, and John Cusack; check them out after the jump, and follow the title links to watch them right now.
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