I just stepped out the theater and here’s what I’m thinking:
Tony Stark was supposed to have been undergoing some kind of issue that may or may not have been discussed in the past and it has to do with how he cannot sleep. I think there may have been a story somewhere there and they should have pursued that, a kind of ‘he is not as infallible as you think’, always compelling with superhero stories imo, but for some reason they didn’t.
Or maybe they did, but at some point during the movie a villain appeared, (the guy who played the king’s brother in ‘The King’s Speech’), and there started a story around him as well as a girl (she played Ben Affleck’s girlfriend in the excellent ‘The Town’), but it wasn’t really interesting, didn’t make sense, or both. At any rate I felt I was being distracted from what I really wanted to know – what was wrong with Tony Stark and how was he going to deal with it.
After that was an hour plus of this or that with some kid, quite likely to please the kids in the audience. Then we get to the big scene where he rescues Pepper Potts and it turns out she has developed powers of her own after being tortured. I felt queasy about her being tortured and how Tony takes so long to help her, but at the same time you can’t help shake your head at the gratuitous display of Paltrow’s MMA quality abs.
He saves the day in spectacular fashion as expected, declares some changes in his life, I get a question mark in my head on queue, watch the credits till the end to see the extra parts Marvel movies always have, and realize it wasn’t worth watching.
Which might as well describe the rest of the movie: it is not worth watching.