Posted on 7/30/12 02:12 AM
"Please, call me Kent."
Synopsis: In rustic 1957 Maine, 9-year-old Hogarth finds a colossal but disoriented robot (of unknown origin), and the two form a strong bond of friendship. Before long, however, a government agent is on their trail -- and he's intent on destroying the automaton.
Released in 1999, The Iron Giant couldn't have had worse timing. After the rousing success of Toy Story just four years prior, as well as Pixar's equally exciting "A Bug's Life" follow up in 1998, animation's audience was eager to embrace computer generated images and must have looked at The Iron Giant as some form of regression. The film bombed at the box office, failing to recoup even half of what it cost to produce; and the film quitely slipped into oblivion.
Thank goodness for the miracle of home video such as dvd. As a result, the sins of the past need not be repeated and more and more people can discover this great animated film for themselves. Pixar was wise to stand up and take notice of the film's quality by absorbing the competition and making Brad Bird (director of The Iron Giant) a part of Pixar. The picture has stellar character development, surprisingly powerful images, and a script that tackles some oddball subjects such as gun control.
If the film has a downside it is it's relatively straightforward structure, making it somewhat predictable. But such a flaw is rendered mute as we are treated to The Iron Giant's evocative period ambiance, great vocal talent, and heartfelt narrative.
Though the film is held back by it's typical structuring, The Iron Giant is a smart, earthbound, and warm family film.