A Marxist View of Iron Man
Iron Man made its on-screen debut in May of 2008 during a time period that was clouded with political turmoil primarily dealing with the United States’ relations with the Middle East. This movie, written by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, and directed by Jon Favreau, follows the main character Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) as he escapes entrapment in the Middle East and develops into the world hero called Iron Man. Under Marxist criticism, which at its core can be defined as “focusing on the ideological content of a work of literature and its explicit and implicit assumptions and values about matters like culture, race, class, and power, Iron Man, can be viewed as a politically-laced film the deals heavily with relations in the Middle East, culture, social class standing, stereotypes, and many other socioeconomic factors. To begin this criticism, one must first understand what is happening in the world during this time period. The year of 2008 falls at the end of the Bush era of presidency. This era was loaded with political turmoil dealing primarily with the fact that America fell under terrorist attacks in 2001. These terrorist attacks caused President George W. Bush to declare war on Iraq and Afghanistan. This war still rages on today in 2014. The original Iron Man comic book was released during a time of war and was set in Vietnam with the main character defeating the Vietnam forces, but for the feature film the location was changed to Afghanistan. Why? The answer is easy. To fit the war America was currently involved in. Iron Man begins with our main character, Tony Stark, declaring that he has “privatized world peace” with the invention of his new missile technology that he calls Jericho. The Jericho missile is supposed to be able to end war instantaneously, but all of this changes when Tony Stark is ambushed by insurgents and held captive. Tony Stark now faces the challenge of building the new missile technology for the Middle...
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