WarningMight contain spoilers.

Perhaps a little dated now, given all that has followed, but still as good as ever, with even the special effects mostly standing the test of time because they weren’t entirely digital. Never forget that the juggernaut that is the Marvel Cinematic Universe exists today because it was built one watchable movie at a time—the sheer quality of Iron Man, releasing the same year as The Dark Knight with no erstwhile major studio or brand behind it, is what made everything else possible. Remember, too, the post-credits scene that launched the MCU: even 25 films and 11 TV series later,[1] You think you’re the only superhero out there? still has the power to awe.

I can’t say I enjoyed seeing Terrence Howard as Rhodey. I’m glad Don Cheadle replaced him. Faran Tahir is out of place as Raza too, as if he’s a visitor from another story. On the other hand, it’s nice to see Agent Coulson again! There are some elements in the film that you just wouldn’t see in today’s Marvel fare, like how Tony treats women, a subject which is handled better even in Guardians of the Galaxy .

Obadiah being the villain is so clearly telegraphed, I don’t understand how it surprised me the first time I watched it, except that I was so engrossed.

  1. Only counting the shows I’ve watched.