01/06/2011. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts
pub: Marvel Studios. 226 page squarish hardback in box cover. Price: varies, I pulled my copy last year and got it reasonably cheap. Normal price: $49.99 (US). I pulled my copy last year for under GBP 26 (UK). It is still possible so look around. ISBN: 978-0-7851-4320-8).
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After the difficulty of getting the book ‘The Art Of Iron Man’ at a decent price when I discovered it a couple years ago, I kept my eye out for its sequel to match it when the second ‘Iron Man’ film was released and at a decent price. Consequently, I ended up sitting on it figuratively until I could go after its DVD release and checking now have noticed the price has crept up and no softcover issue. Something to remember when the ‘Thor’ film artbook. I should point out that the box cover this book comes in would support me sitting on it although it would be uncomfortable but you know what I mean.
After watching the ‘Iron Man 2’ film, it’s pretty obvious that there was a lot of work by a massive team of people and this book only shows a sampling of the design work not only on Iron Man, War Machine and Whiplash but also that of Stark’s home, the Expo, Hammer Industries and even the Ironettes, not to mention a stack of storyboards showing how the battles were put together. With a massive film such as this there has to be a massive dependency on not only storyboards but illustration and when compared to the film, you can see how much they were used to dot everything together.
Picking out favourite bits when I don’t have permission to show interiors is something more like you having to take my word for. What I found really interesting was the various development choices for how they had Stark’s portable armour wrap around him to turn him into Iron Man. When you see the final film you tend to be aware of the final choice, not the hard word that led to it.
Further on, you get to see the practical armour that actor Robert Downey Jr. wore and one of the main reasons it got updated was to make it easier to take off. The attention to detail makes this book fascinating not only to see the Iron Man design develop but also for War Machine and even the Black Widow. With the latter, they became rather elaborate before pulling back to something resembling the comicbook version. There is also some explanation why Whiplash was selected as villain and why modifications were made from the comicbook zoot suit version and combing it with some aspects of the Crimson Dynamo. With a third film being produced, I hope they’re at least considering the Mandarin. Granted he was originally more of a Fu Manchu variant but Iron Man really needs to face a villain who isn’t armoured but still powerful.
If you like collecting film artbooks, then you’ve no doubt pulled this book. If you’re looking for something to really add to your collection related to the film then you won’t be sorry in owning this book.
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