Iron Man Solid Gold
Critics love Downey as avenger in superhero turn
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 1, 2008 5:30 PM CDT
In this image released by Paramount Pictures, Robert Downey Jr. stars as billionaire industrialist Tony Stark aka Iron Man.   (AP Photo/Paramount Pictures, Zade Rosenthal)
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(Newser) Iron Man rockets into theaters tomorrow, and it’s so good it “practically dares the competition to measure up,” Peter Travers writes in Rolling Stone. Critics are nearly unanimous in praising the latest superhero flick, admiring its “raw vitality” and “pitch-perfect casting.” Robert Downey Jr., in particular, “brings so much creative juice to the party that Iron Man achieves instant liftoff.”

Flying robot suits aside, director Jon Favreau makes Iron Man “a compellingly down-to-earth superhero fantasy,” writes Owen Gleiberman for Entertainment Weekly, telling the story of a billionaire arms manufacturer’s redemption. “Favreau and Downey stay focused on the real story,” writes Frank Lovece of Newsday. “For all its firepower and slickness, that’s what really makes Iron Man fly.”