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Iron Giant
     

The Iron Giant

4.7 17
Director: Brad Bird

Cast: Eli Marienthal, Vin Diesel, Jennifer Aniston

 

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A boy's best friend is his robot in this animated adventure from Brad Bird, best known for his TV work on such series as The Simpsons, King of the Hill, and The Critic. Set in 1957, The Iron Giant focuses on Hogarth (voice of Eli Marienthal), an imaginative nine-year-old boy who daydreams of alien invasions and doing battle with Communist

Overview

A boy's best friend is his robot in this animated adventure from Brad Bird, best known for his TV work on such series as The Simpsons, King of the Hill, and The Critic. Set in 1957, The Iron Giant focuses on Hogarth (voice of Eli Marienthal), an imaginative nine-year-old boy who daydreams of alien invasions and doing battle with Communist agents. One day, Hogarth hears a local fisherman talk about something that surpasses anything he could dream up: a fifty-foot robot that fell from the sky into a nearby lake. Needless to say, Hogarth's mom, Annie (voice of Jennifer Aniston) finds this a little hard to swallow, but when Hogarth finds the robot (voice of Vin Diesel) and fishes him out of the water, his pal Dean (voice of Harry Connick Jr.), a beatnik sculptor who also runs a junkyard, offers to help by hiding the robot with his salvage. A government agent named Kent Mansley (voice of Christopher McDonald) soon gets wind that there's a mechanical invader of unknown origins in the neighborhood and wants to wipe out the potential threat. However, the robot (which loves to eat metal and is learning to talk) turns out to be friendly, and the boy in turn tries to teach his new pal the ways of humans. The Iron Giant is loosely based on the book The Iron Man by late British poet Ted Hughes, previously adapted for the stage by rock musician Pete Townshend, who executive produced the film.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Donald Liebenson
Directed by Brad Bird (of "The Simpsons") and based on a storybook by British poet laureate Ted Hughes, The Iron Giant was among 1999's very best family films despite its inexplicably swift departure from theaters. Set in 1957 against a backdrop of cold war paranoia engendered by Russia's Sputnik launch, this is a deeply satisfying and lushly animated parable of friendship and trust. In the woods near his bucolic Maine hometown, imaginative nine-year-old Hogarth (voiced by Eli Marienthal) rescues and befriends a titanic mechanical man that has fallen from the sky. Hogarth must keep the iron man hidden from his mother (Jennifer Aniston) and a snooping government agent (Christopher McDonald) determined to find the metal man and destroy it. The expert cast of voices also includes Harry Connick Jr. as Dean, a beatnik and aspiring artist whose junkyard provides sanctuary and sustenance for the robot. Programmed with the potential to be either a ferocious weapon of a 50-foot toy, the giant has a few things to iron out, and Hogarth there to help him. A towering filmmaking achievement, The Iron Giant is finally finding the audience it so richly deserves.
All Movie Guide
The Iron Giant is a wondrous animated fairy tale of post-Sputnik paranoia and the related fears of "otherness" that carries with it warm messages about friendship and non-violence. What should have been an unqualified hit, however, managed a scant $23 million at the box office due to an infamously indifferent advertising campaign by Warner Bros., which demonstrated that its animation competitors (Disney and Dreamworks) are far more comfortable with this end of the business. After all, the materials are all first-rate, from the incredibly cool-looking gentle giant, to the enthusiastic vocal talent, to the tight adaptation of Ted Hughes' book by directors Brad Bird and Tim McCanlies. What might seem on the surface like a simple "boy and his robot" tale is secretly a wicked parody of the 1950s, targeting not only hair-trigger government agents, but also pulp monster movies and laid-back beatniks. What provides the spine-tingling emotional core is the tender characterization of the childlike giant, whose swirling circular eyes and gravelly voice (thank you, Vin Diesel) convey heart-breaking empathy. Watching him innocently chomp junked cars and farm equipment is also oodles of fun. The struggle between this benevolent soul and his battle droid pre-programming, which appears in a flashy display of inventive artillery near the end, also sends a crystalline message to children that guns are bad -- an idea rarely communicated to them in so entertaining a fashion. It's a real shame that Hughes died during production, meaning he never got to see this glorious realization of his work.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/23/1999
UPC:
0085391764434
Original Release:
1999
Rating:
PG
Source:
Warner Home Video

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Eli Marienthal Hogarth Hughes
Vin Diesel The Iron Giant
Jennifer Aniston Annie Hughes
Harry Connick Dean McCoppen
Christopher McDonald Kent Mansley
James Gammon Marve Loach
Cloris Leachman Mrs. Tensedge
John Mahoney Shannon Rogard
M. Emmet Walsh Earl Stutz
Mary Kay Bergman Voice Only
Frank Thomas Train Engineer #2
Ollie Johnston Train Engineer #1

Technical Credits
Brad Bird Director,Screenwriter
Allison Abbate Producer
Alan Bodner Art Director
Mark Dinicola Cinematographer
Darren Holmes Editor
Michael Kamen Score Composer
Marci Liroff Casting
Des McAnuff Producer
Tim McCanlies Screenwriter
Randy Thom Sound/Sound Designer
Pete Townshend Executive Producer
John Walker Associate Producer
Mark Whiting Production Designer

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The Iron Giant 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm not big on cartoons anymore, since i have reached my later teenage years. This movie is still a favorite of mine however, and i really look forward to purchasing the DVD. Any child with a sense of humor and imagination will love this movie until they become older and pass it on to their children. It's a timeless classic that hasn't yet been known to the world as one. I really hope everyone takes the chance to get this great DVD about an alien giant who no longer remembers where he is from, and has befriended a young boy who shows him the ropes of the Earth in the late 1950's.
Guest More than 1 year ago
One of the most heartwarming, hilarious, and fun animated movies made in years, this movie was the victim of one of Warner Bros. worst marketing blunders ever. Most people were barely aware of it but those of us that saw it came out of the theatre either speechless or jabbering like excited 10 year olds. This story about a boy and a giant robot that doesn't remember what he's supposed to be, is the perfect example of what an animated film should be like. A wonderful adventure, crazy antics, and a story of true friendship. Fun for the whole family!
night_reader_momx4 More than 1 year ago
Movie is great for whole family, all my kids love it! (ages 1-15 yrs) my daugther asked for this for her birthday...searched high and low...shoulda just checked Barnes&Noble...they had it! My daughter was thrilled.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very entertaining for small ones and for parents. My 2 year old daughter has probably watched it 30 times. Even for the smaller children the visual images will keep there attention. Even at age 2 my daughter did takeaway that we can 'choose who we want to be' and that 'guns are dangerous'. We also bought a copy for my 8 year old nephew who also loves the movie. Parents can enjoy it as well!
Guest More than 1 year ago
They Better make a sequel, That's all i got to say about that !
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie goes beyond discussing good and bad, weapons or no-weapons. It strikes at the very heart human nature: are we as a race/species able to control our feelings and opinions just long enough to look at the larger picture to understand what is really important? YES that is a very heavy question found in a children's movie! But the movie is well worth it - regardless if you watch it for entertainment or a discussion of ethics. Side Commentary: Get a group of adults together and watch this along with the movie Ice Age (yes, another children's movie). I think I can promise a discussion like you have never heard before will emerge from the group.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's June 2003 and The Iron Giant is an incredible movie. It teaches so many things like love, emotion, kindness, friendships, etc. Mostly, I love that it teaches guns are not safe. I have 4 yrs boy/girl twins and it's hard in todays world to find a movie that teaches violence is not good. They both loved the movie so much! Please share this heartfelt movie with your child. It's a must see with your family!!!
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