Lots of superhero movies play on the vulnerabilities of their main characters. But can you have a superhero movie without a superhero?
Iron Man 3 comes close. Robert Downey, Jr. stars as Tony Stark, and for the middle third of the movie he's just plain Tony Stark. No fancy suit, no metal face, no super powers.
And it works pretty well, says Christopher Orr of The Atlantic. The key to Iron Man 3's success is writer Shane Black, whose subversive and humorist script keeps Stark ironic and funny as well as self-absorbed. The film deals in familiar tropes, but always with an awareness of what it's doing.
See the story at The Atlantic.