Paul Bettany broke out in 2001 when he stole A Knight’s Tale as a very unorthodox Geoffery Chaucer, co-starred with future MCU partner Robert Downey Jr. in Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang), and was part of the stellar ensemble for the year’s Best Picture: A Beautiful Mind. Since then, he has established himself as one of the most dependable character actors in Hollywood in films like Master & Commander, Margin Call, and The Young Victoria. Bettany is most popularly known for his work in the MCU since the franchise’s first film: Iron Man. He voiced Tony Stark’s AI suit companion, JARVIS, in all three Iron Man solo films and the first Avengers film before JARVIS became Vision in Avengers: Age of Ultron. He would reprise Vision in Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. Bettany’s recent career renaissance also includes a stellar performance as the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski, in The Discovery Channel’s Manhunt: Unabomber, as well as putting his mark on the Star Wars Universe as the main villain in Solo: A Star Wars Story. Bettany has been married to actress Jennifer Connelly since 2003.
Continue reading Paul Bettany’s 10 Best Movies
Through 17 films, I would only count one MCU film as a disappointment (though some are certainly better than others) and that’s Iron Man 3. The only thing that has kept me from loathing the film more than I do was the Marvel One-Shot (I really miss those) that they did “All Hail the King” in which they fixed the film’s biggest blunder: making The Mandarin, Iron Man’s only good villain, into a complete joke.
Aside from The Mandarin debacle, Iron Man 3’s main problem is that it butchers Warren Ellis’ classic Extremis storyline, doesn’t do anything to advance Tony’s character other than blow up all his stuff, which he starts rebuilding before the credits finish, and the film generally stands outside of the MCU’s storyline. That’s fine for a lot of films, but Iron Man has been the backbone of the MCU since he started it, and to waste his last solo film was unforgivable.
There are two things about IM3 that are good enough that the film ekes out a positive rating (post-All Hail the King): Tony & Harley and the plane rescue sequence. I honestly could’ve done with a whole film of just Tony and that kid hanging out in Tennessee, but the film’s best sequence is a mid-air rescue of 13 free falling passengers after Air Force One is compromised. It’s an amazing F/X sequence, a great use of JARVIS, and some very creative problem solving by Tony. Would that the rest of the film had lived up to it.
Ultron has been cast and he’s the nerdy professor from Stargate! Marvel released the casting announcement with not a whole lot of context or fanfare. Ultron will be the main villain in Avengers 2 (officially “Avengers: Age of Ultron”) and given that he’s a pretty big robot and James Spader is this:
I think we’re talking about James Spader doing the voice and maybe motion capture for the villain. Just as a quick review for those of you who spent high school dating and/or outdoors, Ultron is an artificial intelligence with an extreme predilection toward genocide. Created in the comics by Dr. Hank Pym (Ant Man), the A.I. quickly evolved and made some fairly dangerous leaps in logic regarding human existence. The Avengers defeated Ultron and Dr. Pym’s next foray into androids (because that totally wasn’t a signal to stop) created The Vision, one of the greatest Avengers in the franchise’s history. It’s his head Ultron is holding in the header picture. Ah siblings. Every time Ultron is defeated, he evolves, learns, adapts and returns stronger and more hellbent on killing the “meat bags”. Hank Pym is not going to be in Avengers 2; we know that. I’m not even sure if the Ant-Man that Edgar Wright’s film will use to kick off Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is Hank Pym. Given that Tony Stark already build an AI – JARVIS – it’s not a big leap to see him as Ultron’s creator in the comics. Some were speculating that Ultron was actually going to be JARVIS breaking bad, but Spader’s casting makes that seem unlikely. Avengers: Age of Ultron will hit theaters on May 1, 2015.