The 15 Greatest Moments in the ‘Iron Man’ Trilogy

Published 1 year ago by This is a list post.

The 15 Greatest Moments from the 'Iron Man' Trilogy

Iron Man 2 - War Machine & Iron Man Back-to-Back Sony did it with Spider-Man. 21st Century Fox did it with X-Men and Warner Bros. did it with The Dark Knight. Now, Marvel has finally completed its own movie trilogy based on a comic book super hero: Iron Man. All three films have their high and low points (of which, everyone's opinions differ). While fanboys were just hoping that an Iron Man movie would do Marvel's second-tier character justice, they had no idea that the franchise would turn out to be THIS successful. To coincide with the release of Iron Man 3, we've pulled together what we think are the Greatest Moments from the 'Iron Man' Trilogy and listed them in chronological order. WARNING: THE LAST FOUR SLIDES CONTAIN MASSIVE IRON MAN 3 SPOILERS!!!

Jericho Missile Demonstration (Iron Man 1)

Iron Man 1 - Jericho Missile Demonstration The Jericho missile demonstration at the beginning of Iron Man sets up the entire framework of the series. Without it, Tony Stark most likely wouldn’t have been in Afghanistan and he may have never been shot with shrapnel or held hostage in a cave - which, of course, led to him building his greatest invention ever. The demonstration itself is an impressive feat of military-style weaponry with Tony boasting: "They say the best weapon is the one you never have to fire. I respectfully disagree. I say, the best weapon is the one you only have to fire once! That's how dad did it. That's how America does it...and it's worked pretty well so far." The Jericho Missile fits that description 100 times over.

Escaping the Cave (Iron Man 1)

Iron Man 1 - Escaping the Cave From the time Tony decides to build a walking suit of destruction to the epic moment where the Mark 1 first appears in broad daylight, the entire cave escape sequence is an incredible few minutes of awesomeness! Of course, Tony couldn't have built it without the help of fellow captive, Yinsen. After Yinsen straps Tony into the suit, he gives up his life while telling Stark not to waste his – and Tony heeds those words well. Having a bit of vengeful streak, Tony exacts his revenge for the death of his fallen friend and his own captivity by wreaking havoc on all the terrorists at the camp in a fiery and explosive manner.

First Flight (Iron Man 1)

Iron Man 1 - Mark 2 First Flight Fanboys were all squealing like little girls at a Justin Bieber concert watching Tony build then test (sometimes failing in hysterical fashion) the Mark 2 armor in his basement workshop. It's hard to blame them, though, as most mainstream audiences also became excited as Tony suddenly realized, "Yeah...I can fly." Throwing caution to the wind and ignoring the warnings of his AI butler Jarvis, Tony shoots out into the night sky for his first flight like an excited teenager testing out his new motorcycle for the very first time - and it's a glorious ride to join him on. From the guitar-driven music to the first time we see "inside" the helmet, everything about the moment makes our nerdy hearts race.

Confronting the Terrorists (Iron Man 1)

Iron Man 1 - Confronting the Terrorists After returning from captivity and deciding to shut down the weapons division of Stark Industries, Tony learns that the same people who kidnapped him have managed to acquire his weapons technology - including the powerful Jericho Missile. While watching the news unfold on TV, he recalibrates his palm-thrusters (used to stabilize himself during flight) into a power energy weapon: the repulsor ray. After landing in spectacular Iron Man fashion, he proceeds to confront the terrorists and dispatch them all with ease - even though they fight back with automatic weapons and a tank! Having the good guys walk away while something explodes in the background is usually too cliched for us. However, when it involves Iron Man, it goes from being a Hollywood cliche to an "OMG I WANT TO WATCH IT AGAIN!" moment.

Fight with Iron Monger (Iron Man 1)

Iron Man 1 - Fight with Iron Monger Poor Tony Stark. It's not easy being a genius, billionaire, playboy philanthropist - especially when one of your trusted allies turns on you and tries to squash you like a bug. Obadiah Stane was Tony's second-in-command at Stark Industries, but greed and jealousy clouded his judgment and he had his own weaponized suit built with the intent to sell it to terrorist countries all over the world. When Tony finally discovers his former friend's true plans, he attempts to stop him. Iron Man's fight with Iron Monger is now arguably the best and most epic final fight scene of all three films. Mechanized suits are tossed through buses. Rockets are fired. Energy weapons are discharged violently. It all adds up to one fantastic superhero movie sequence.

I am Iron Man (Iron Man 1)

Iron Man 1 - I'm Iron Man After the climactic battle with Iron Monger, reporters were naturally clamoring to discover the identity of the world's newest super hero. Of course, the US military wants to keep Tony's identity a secret (shocker!) and at first Tony plays along. However, being the narcissist that he is, Tony can't help himself and he calmly proclaims: "I am Iron Man." It's a bold step for Stark, as most superheroes - such as Spider-Man and Batman - are reluctant to reveal their true identity in an attempt to protect their loved ones from harm. Tony takes the very opposite approach and WANTS the world to know who he is for various reasons - not the least of which is to feed his own ego. Without this admission, though, none of the stories in the follow-up films, including The Avengers, would have been nearly as interesting.

Tony Stark Talks to Congress (Iron Man 2)

Iron Man 2 - Tony Talks to Congress After the proclaiming to the world that he was Iron Man, Tony Stark went into full-on smarmy mode. Over-the-top and full of himself, he’s clearly living it up being the center of the entire world’s attention. There's no better demonstration of his snarky swagger than when he's called to testify in front of the United States Senate. Senator Stern serves as the main antagonist for this scene and Tony is more than happy to push every button he can to ruffle the Senator's feathers. The government wants Stark's property because they consider it a weapon of mass destruction, but he isn't giving it up because he calls it advance prosthesis. It shouldn't be overlooked that Stark clowns rival Justin Hammer and the other nation's attempts at replicating the Iron Man suit when he hacks the closed-circuit TVs in real-time and displays their failures for all the world to see.

Ivan vs. Tony in Monaco (Iron Man 2)

Iron Man 2 - Whiplash Confronts Tony at Monaco The entire scene revolving around the Circuit de Monaco Formula 1 race is one of the best moments in the film, as it gives us one of the few great "good guy versus bad guy" fights at that point in the trilogy. Ivan Vanko - upset at Howard Stark, whom he thinks stole his father’s arc reactor idea - decides to show the world that Tony Stark isn't as invulnerable as he claims to be. He creates long plasma whips using the same arc reactor technology that powers Tony's armor and attacks him on the course. The whole scene is tense and filled with spectacular SFX action as Tony comes close to death several times at the hands (read: whips) of Vanko.

Briefcase Armor (Iron Man 2)

Iron Man 2 - Briefcase Armor Tony Stark is no fool. He knew that once he boastfully told the world he was Iron Man he would have the crazies come out of the wood work to challenge him. One problem: He couldn't always have the Mark 3 armor with him, due to its bulkiness, so that's when he designed the Mark V – A.K.A., the “suitcase armor”. The armor provides the same amount of protection and strength enhancements as the full-size suits, but lacks the ability to fly and only has limited weapons. Though it isn't as bulky as his other armors, the Mark V is powerful enough to withstand the bombardment of Vanko's energy whips. As cool as it was to watch Tony suit up for the first time in the Mark II and Mark III armors, watching the Mark V rapidly deploy to protect him may still be the coolest "suiting up" sequence of all three films.

Black Widow Hallway Fight (Iron Man 2)

Iron Man 2 - Black Widow Hallway Fight It's not until Vanko cyber-hijacks the War Machine armor that we get to see the beautiful and deadly Natasha Romanoff, A.K.A. "Black Widow" in action. Until that point, she'd been little more than eye-candy on the screen. She, along with Happy Hogan, breaks into Hammer Industries and, once there, encounter a slew of security personnel. While Happy goes mano-a-mano with the first guy, Natasha proceeds to dispatch the remaining guards - ALL THE REMAINING GUARDS - with grace and precision. The scene includes everything a comic book fanboy could hope to see onscreen: high-tech gadgetry, martial arts action, sly humor and Scarlett Johansson in a tight leather outfit.

Iron Man & War Machine vs. Drones (Iron Man 2)

Iron Man 2 - War Machine & Iron Man Battle Drones This is the moment that showed up in teaser footage at San Diego Comic-Con. It was the moment teased in trailers. THIS is the moment that made every single person in the theater simultaneously sit up and say "HOLY CRAP THAT WAS AWESOME!!!" It's the moment when War Machine and Iron Man finally work together, standing back-to-back, surrounded by drones, and seemingly pinned in the "death box" with no chance of escape - there wasn't a fanboy anywhere that didn't feel the electricity between these two mechanized titans. There were no words necessary as the air was filled with repulsor blasts and automatic machine gun fire. The best moment in the film reached an awesome climax as Tony tells Rhodey to get down and wipes out the entire band of drones with one spin of his highly impressive wrist laser. *MASSIVE IRON MAN 3 SPOILERS ON THE NEXT 4 SLIDES*

Malibu House Destruction (Iron Man 3)

Iron Man 3 - Malibu House Destruction Until this moment in Iron Man 3 there really hadn't been much action. However, after Tony's former bodyguard Happy Hogan is severely injured by one of the Mandarin's bombings, Tony goes on the record and calls the elusive terrorist out publicly - going as far and giving him his home address. While Pepper is trying to make Tony leave the house and go into hiding, Tony is too stubborn to admit he may have poked a hornet's nest and refuses to leave his cliff-side mansion. With no warning (and the world watching) the Mandarin's crew launches a missile attack - leveling the entire back part of the house, while Pepper and Tony are still in it. This is a critical moment in the film as it shows just how vulnerable and exposed both Tony and his loved ones are; it also shows just how much of a genius he really is. In an incredibly fantastic scene, using hand gestures, Tony sends the Mark 42 to engulf Pepper mid-air - protecting her from harm.

Air Force 1 Rescue (Iron Man 3)

Iron Man 3 - Air Force 1 Rescue The set-up for this scene begins when War Machine, now re-branded Iron Patriot (it tested well in focus groups), is stolen by Aldrich Killian. With Killian's right-hand man Savin piloting the suit, Iron Patriot boards Air Force One with the Secret Service assuming Colonel Rhodes is inside. After stuffing the President of the United States into the suit and sending him off, he blows a hole in the fuselage, sending the occupants free-falling to the ground below. That is when Iron Man swoops in and begins catching the plummeting people one-by-one. It's a tense moment in the movie as Iron Man can only hold 4 people and there are 13 to rescue. After all the people are safely lowered into the water below, Iron Man is struck by a passing semi-truck and the suit shatters into dozens of pieces, which at first makes you gasp - until you realize Tony was operating the suit remotely the entire time. You got us, Shane Black!

House Party Protocol (Iron Man 3)

Iron Man 3 - House Party This scene was teased early on in the trailers and it's one that should've happened much sooner. Because of what happened in New York (read: Tony flying through a wormhole), he's been experiencing vicious anxiety attacks and hasn't really slept in days. Instead, he's been spending his nights building dozens of various specialized armors and storing them in the bunker under his basement. When Rhodey and Stark find Killian and the President aboard an oil tanker, they soon realize they are hopelessly - laughably - outnumbered by Killian's very powerful Extremis soldiers. That's when Stark tells Jarvis to initiate protocol "House Party". Soon, close to forty fully autonomous armors appear on the scene. There should have been more scenes of the armors using their specialized abilities, but it was still awesome to see Igor bust through a group of containers to support the entire weight of a collapsing crane.

Extremis Pepper Potts (Iron Man 3)

Iron Man 3 - Extremis Pepper Potts Aldrich Killian is the founder of A.I.M. (Advanced Idea Mechanics) and has teamed with "botanist" Maya Hansen in an attempt to perfect her regeneration virus called Extremis. It's original purpose was to help people grow back lost limbs - and in addition, the subject receives super-human strength and the ability to generate high levels of heat with their body. However, the formula is flawed and as a side effect the subjects can become - quite literally - explosive. Killian wants Stark to help him perfect the formula - and to give him incentive, he injects Pepper Potts with the virus. During their escape, Pepper slips from Tony's grasp and falls to her "death", only to regenerate like a phoenix from the flames moments later. Pepper becomes super-strong and, in either a fit of rage or as an act of protecting Tony, takes out Killian in spectacular fashion, saying afterwards, "Wow, I was SO violent."

The 15 Greatest Moments from the 'Iron Man' Trilogy

Iron Man 3 - Tony Stark & Mark 42 Armor Love it or hate it, the Iron Man trilogy - no matter how flawed it might be - is complete and there are plenty of great scenes and moments scattered throughout all three films. Robert Downey, Jr. may or may not be done playing the character - he'll at least revise the character once more in The Avengers 2 and possible a cameos in the new S.H.I.E.L.D TV series. What were some of your favorite moments in the Iron Man trilogy and are you looking forward to a possible Iron Man 4? Strap on your Mark 9 armor and follow me on Twitter - @MoviePaul.
TAGS: iron man, iron man 2, iron man 3

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  1. One of my favorite scenes is the after credits after Iron Man with Nick Fury. I know this wasn’t all Tony Stark but that scene alone started the idea of what is the MCU.

    • Mine too! That scene alone got us all extra-excited!

  2. “The Mandarin” worst villain portrayal EVER! Hell he wasn’t even the villain

    • Agreed… wtf marvel!

      • That was one of my favorite parts of the whole franchise! Admit it, you never saw that coming. :D

        • i agree, people are getting too annoyed by the mandarin, if marvel made evrything exactly like it was in the comics there’d be no surprises

          • I could imagine that reveal being the reason Ben Kingsley took the part.

  3. My favorite scene is from IM where he turns and walks away from the tank as it explodes.

  4. lmao. i guess you dont have enough pictures XD there are lots more of great things in iron man 3.

  5. The first flight in Iron Man is…indescribable. The music, the way it was filmed…everything.

    The Congress scene in Iron Man 2 is hilarious

    “My bond is with the people, and I will serve this great nation at the pleasure of myself. If there’s one thing I’ve proven, it’s that you can count on me to pleasure myself.”

    • I personally don’t think Iron Man 2 is nearly as bad as it’s made out to be.

      • Agreed, and fun fact originally Screenrant gave Iron Man 2 a 4 out of 5, but not too long ago changed the score to a three out of 5. I would say 4 out of 5, to me its like Back to the Future 2 its messy in parts sure but its a hellav lot of fun and has some cool idea.

  6. The fight scene in Iron Man 1 was the weak point of the film. A great film in all other respects. It was just better than the main confrontation in Iron Man 2.

    Thank god they got away from having to have an Iron Man versus Iron Man battle at the end.

  7. Its funny how The Mandarin isnt apart of this IM greatest moments. Hmmmm. I wonder why?

    • I thought that reveal was awesome. Totally didn’t see it coming. Well played, Marvel. Well played.

  8. It feels to me that they took out everything that Made Tony Stark/Iron Man, Tony Stark/Iron Man in Iron Man 3. It feels as thought they took all his “ingenuity” and intelligence, and threw it all out the window with his suits.

  9. It’s not a major scene at all, but it just made me smile in IM3 when he was getting food with Rhodey and he had an anxiety attack and then went outside the bar to get into his suit that was just parked outside like a motorbike.

    • @spacecadet – I considered including that scene but it wasn’t really a “moment” in the sense we were describing here. It was more like a brief “Hah that’s cool” then it’s gone , moment.

      I loved the way they used the armor at the bar as well.

      Paul Young

      • You guys notice it was the “wear and tear” armor from fixing the Helicarrier?

      • Yeah, that was cool and on par with the interrogation scene when he kept threatening to kick the guards’ asses while they laughed at him and acted all nonchalant about it. Until it actually happened.

        Funny thing is, I haven’t thought about that scene for maybe 8 days but this article and that comment brought it back and damn, it was funny.

        Mandarin was also great and his terrorist videos were extremely well made.

        • @mindbender – no I didn’t notice that. If that is the case good spot :)

          @dazz – when he’s counting down and the armour is still not arriving, haha, was a good fun scene too :)

      • @paul young – Yeah I agree with what you said, it wasn’t really one of the nerdgasm moments, which are after all what the major triology moments are. It was just a fun scene. I like the way you summed it up – “hah that’s cool”.

        Would you guys consider doing more of these “best moments of a triology/film/TV series”. Maybe you could do LOTR, TDK trilogy, The Godfather triology, Original Star Trek Films/TV series, Bond, NCIS, Lost, Batman and Superman animated series etc (just listing stuff off the top of my head, sorry if they are not the best suggestions) as it is always enjoyable to reminisce.

        Thanks for replying to my comment :)

        • Good idea.

  10. How is the scene where Tony fights Savin and the chick not on this as well as Tony breaking into the Mandarins manchine?

  11. *Mansion

  12. My favorites moments:

    IM1:
    1. The entire sequence of IM1 from beginning until he got out of the cave.

    IM2:
    1. Didn’t really enjoy IM2

    IM3.
    1. The first moment when we realized Tony could operate the armor without being in it.

    2. The scenes with Harley.

    3. The sequence in which he had to catch all 13 people from the plane, to find out that he wasn’t in the armor.

    4. The final fight scene with the battle of the Extremis soldiers vs all of the Iron Men.

    I enjoyed the trilogy. It had it’s flaws, but things will only get better imo.

    For me: IM3 > IM1 > IM2

    • The scenes with Harley. YES, THANK YOU.

  13. Iron Man: First flight out in the Mark 2

    Iron Man 2: The moment when Iron Man and War Machine team up against the drones

    Iron Man 3: When Tony summons his armor to save Pepper during the destruction of the mansion. OR The after credit scene

  14. My favorite moments in the trilogy okay

    Iron man- gonna have to be the very last scene. “I am iron man”

    Iron man 2- the obvious war machine and iron man working together at the end. Awesome

    Iron man 3 – which I love btw looked beautiful on IMAX! But I have a couple favorite moments everything with pepper , she was a badass MF.
    - iron parriots war machine banter
    - the entire “house call protocol” scene and the End when he goes I am iron man. Pretty epic.

    Also liked the fact that we got to see when the doctor from the cave met him in Switzerland. I thought that was. A very cool call back.

    And very last banner!!

  15. what about the dora watch scene?
    i think that’s very adorable, and somehow one of the greatest moment in Iron Man 3
    lol

    • The kid coming home from school and opening his shed was pretty epic too. It was a nice touch bringing a boy into the story to emphasize the case of hero worship we all have over super heroes.

      • I actually thought that was the best scene in the entire movie.

  16. I’m so happy finally a group of commenters not bashing IM3 :D hello friends!!!!!!!

    • Well allow me to disappoint you,because I don’t think that anything from IM3 belongs on this list.

  17. My favourite moment in the trilogy, The end credits in Ironman 3, Im glad its over…The Dark Knight Trilogy>>>>>>>ironman trilogy

    • Yeah, that moment with Banner was awesome!

  18. I thought Blade was apart of Marvel? was it not a trilogy? Loved all the Iornman movies, Imma hate to see a reboot of Iornman or when RDJ is no longer playint Tony Starks

  19. Need to watch IM3 again to really relive the moments in this fast moving flick. By the time we were able to pull the events together and make some sense of it, it’s gone and we are left with quasi ‘WTF I just saw?’ state. Watch the DVD guys – only then can we give the movie a final verdict. Reading the comments helped to clear up some things too. Looking back, loved the Mark 42 moments involving Pepper and AirForce 1 ejectees. Many happy returns of IM!!!

  20. How about they do the best parts or Scenes in the Avengers Movie lol

    Avengers best scenes:
    Scene 1:
    Tony Stark Vs Cap: Cap: Take off the Suit and Armor what the hell are you?
    Tony: Genious Billionare Play boy Spalantaphis

    Scene 2:
    Loki Vs. Tony Stark: Loki: who are you?
    Tony: The Avengers is what we call our selfs Earths Mightest Heros Loki: I have an Army Tony: We have a hulk

    Scene 3: Iron Man Vs. Thor Vs Cap

    and the rest continues there were so many good scenes in this movie alone which is why it a billion dollar franchise

    • No idea what a Spalantaphis is, Sam, but I don’t think I’d want one knocking on my door after dark… :-D

  21. The moment in IM3 where Tony is about to shoot the last gunman, who raises his hands in surrender and declares that “all these people are weird” before fleeing.

  22. Oh…and I forgot the best scene Ever

    Scene 4 Avengers:

    Loki Vs. Hulk Hulk: Periom God

    • WTF?

  23. One of my favorite parts of Iron Man 3 is the Mark 42 gag where it is always falling apart lol

  24. I loved Iron Man 3! Falls just a little short of the 1st Iron Man. The third best movie of the Marvel Cinematic Universe after Iron Man and The Avengers.

    Now only if they had done Iron Man 2 properly, this could have become one of the best movie trilogies!

  25. Good choices, Paul. One of my favourite moments from all three movies didn’t even make the final cut of IM2: the “You complete me!” scene from the trailer. Witty, unexpected, nicely played, and summed up the Tony/Pepper relationship (at that point) without any of the irritating, directionless, ad-libbed cokehead jabber of so many of their other exchanges. Think of all the scenes in that film that were crying out for tighter scripting and editing, and this one hit the cutting room floor, apparently, because it would have lessened the impact of Iron Man’s introduction, flying down to the Stark Expo. All fifteen seconds of it.

    From 0:35: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=siQgD9qOhRs

  26. 1. Part 1 – Iron Man hiding underneath the fighter jets and calls Rodey to say that he is in the suit.
    2. Part 1- Everything about the cave scenes
    3. Part 1-Ironmonger vs. Ironman at the end
    4. Part 1-Stark eating cheeseburgers monologue to media
    5. Part 2-His briefing/inquisition at the Congress
    6. Part 2- he and Rodey fighting at the mansion party scene
    7. Part 2- Whiplash and Ironman fight at race track.
    8. Part 2- Tony brings strawberries to Pepper scene through the finding of his fathers work on the model.
    9. Part 3- Ending fight scene
    10.Part 3- Scenes with Harley
    11. Part 3 Switzerland New Years scenes
    12. Part 3 Pepper returns from death and Tony replies “I got nothing”
    13. Part 3- Kingsley as a British maniac

  27. IM 1: The Cave Scene. True Classic.
    IM 2: The fight between IM and Ivan on the race track and of course the tag team fight of War Machine and IM.

  28. My favorite moments from the Iron Man Trilogy are the following:
    1. Iron Man the whole movie, the best stand alone of the Marvel Films.
    2. Iron Man 2 with him back in his lab working on his cure, fighting back to back with War Machine, and The Black Widow Hallway Fight.
    3. Iron Man 3 Scenes with Harley, Being watched by the two henchmen counting down, ( I loved the scene with Dora the limited edition watch comments.) The guard yelling, ” I hate working here, it’s so weird.” Saving the people from Air Force One, Tony Operating Mark 42 by remote control, and the final scene with the Iron Legion fighting.

  29. Is it telling that there’s 6 scenes from IM1, 5 from IM2 and only 4 from IM3 or is that coincidence