movie film review | chris tookey

Iron Giant

1999 - Warner Brothers - all rights reserved
  Iron Giant Review
Tookey's Rating
5 /10
Average Rating
7.57 /10
Voices of: Annie Hughes: Jennifer Aniston, Hogarth Hughes: Eli Marienthal, Dean McCoppin: Harry Connick Jr.
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Directed by: Brad Bird
Written by: Brad Bird and Tim McCanlies, based on the book by Ted Hughes

Released: 1999
Origin: US
Colour: C
Length: 81

A fatherless American boy - his waitress mum is voiced by Jennifer Aniston - befriends a metallic alien from outer space, while the federal authorities (the villain is splendidly voiced by Christopher McDonald) seem intent on reducing him to scrap metal on sight.
Reviewed by Chris Tookey

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This cartoon from Warner Brothers is a huge improvement on their previous efforts, The Quest for Camelot and The King and I. It's very competently animated and mildly touching. The scene where the giant goes for a dip in the local lake with earth-shaking results is so funny that it offers tantalising glimpse of how good the film might have been.

It can't compete with Disney's Tarzan for visual imagination or storytelling ability. The film is based on a book by poet Ted Hughes, which will ensure it more deference than it deserves. Too much is unexplained, including why the alien has come to earth and why he has human emotions as well as militaristic tendencies.

The film, over-similar in theme and storyline to E.T. and Starkid, wears its left-wing prejudices on its sleeve. The military-industrial complex and government are bad. Beatniks, peace campaigners and the anti-hunting lobby good. It's reasonable family entertainment, but my suspicion is that most children will find it an underwhelming experience. And aren't those toys called transformers, which the iron giant resembles, yesterday's news?

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