The Iron Giant 1999 ****

A pre-Pixar Brad Bird creates a wonderful family film with this 1999 adaptation of Ted Hughes book, a bromance between a young boy Hogarth Hughes (Eli Marienthal) and a huge rusting robot called The Iron Giant, voiced by Vin Diesel. Falling to earth, the giant is discovered in the small beatnik-era Maine town of Rockwell by Hogarth, who determines to keep his metal friend a secret from the authorities and his mother Annie (Jennifer Aniston). Presumably the unfashionability of animation at the time stopped The Iron Giant from making a big impact, but Bird’s film deserves a cult-following; it’s smart characters and thoughtful life-lessons make it a moving experience for young and old alike.


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