What is it with super hero movie makers? One good film and they decide the sequel must be "bigger, better, louder, busier". End result is a movie stuffed to overflowing with too many villains, too much action, too many subplots, and not enough core storyline.
It takes a good 60 minutes for Iron Man 2 to finally settle down to a managable pace, by which time the opportunity to care about the characters has passed, and you find yourself just enjoying the explosions.
Tony Stark's character is also a problem; his eccentricity has morphed into outright arrogance and self-obsession. He is no longer the likeable rogue of the first movie, he's far too full of himself in this piece. His lab is like something out of Minority Report with mid-air holographic displays instead of computer screens. It all feels a bit "show off"-ish.
The highlight of Part 2 is Whiplash - whose time battling our Iron hero is criminally limited to just a couple of scenes, and whose storyline could have equalled the awesome clash between Doc Ock and Spidey if only he were allowed the screen time.
Iron Man 2 is almost as bad as Spiderman 3. But not quite. Hollywood never seems to learn, that story and characterisation is key to a superhero film. All they need do is watch Batman Begins and The Dark Knight to see this. Iron Man 1 had so much promise. I hope they get it right for Part 3 but my faith in this franchise has been knocked by Part 2.
Good FX do not make a good movie. It's all about the characters.