While waiting for the apocalypse, I left my bunker for an evening and headed into downtown Kinmount (pop 582) for distractions. The Highlands Cinema had just opened up for the summer season so I went to see the only movie showing. I thought “Iron Man” would be a story about a marathon athelete.
Well if ol’ John of Patmos had been teleported out of his island prison to the seat beside me I don’t think his eyes could have gotten any wider. The fantastical images of good battling evil were a Revelation. It was an old story (rekindled from the Marvel comic dustbin – when did your Mom throw out your collection?) about a dark prince who, after a brush with death has a conversion experience and attempts to turn his genius for weaponry into a force for good.
As any peace activist could have told him, better weapons only lead to worse wars. Iron Man is just another hero caught in the Superman, Hulk, Spiderman web of fighting evil with good-sounding intentions – but leaving lots of (empty?) blown up cars and buildings behind them. The movie is eye candy for the adolescent male in me who eats up the delicious power of shiny electronic machines. I thirst for a hero who can once and for all teach the bad guys a lesson with a punch, a bang, and a multi-million dollar special effects budget.
Retributive justice is part of the Jewish/Christian story too. From Genesis to The Revelation biblical readers can revel in sensational visions of a God who once-and-for-all deals with the bad guys. Iron Man is a silly waste of time full of cliché sterotypes and corporate ad plugs. When the hero returns from months of capture in the desert and orders the driver of his Rolls Royce to make their first stop at Burger King, my tastebuds realized the producers of this flick are mere corporate pornographers.
Oh well, back to the bunker – I mean church – to frame a few more pages of our comic story. My favourite death and gravity defying hero – Jesus - uses entirely different tactics. We losers of the world are empowered with the superhuman Holy Spirit to create evil-transforming communities. Now that is a truly fantastic story of imagination and power. The special effects are provided free.