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Posts Tagged ‘The Matineecast’

When picking a blind spot movie what better recommendation than one from the series organiser, that is sort of what I have done. Back in June, Ryan and his guest Matthew Price spoke about The Iron Giant on the Man of Steel episode of The Matineecast.the iron giant poster

Small town America 1957, Hogarth Hughes a young boy living with his mom discovers a giant robot that has crash landed from space. Due to his need to eat metal the giant is sure to be discovered as he leaves a trail of destruction behind him. Hogarth, helps him and hides him in a nearby scrap yard. But soon government agent Kent is on their trail.

iron giant diner scene

I was aware of the movie from its initial release but didn’t bother watching it because it is animated and as mentioned previously I have never been particularly interested in animation. I had read the 1968 novel The Iron Man by Ted Hughes as a kid and remember enjoying it. It turns out plot of the film is very different from the one in the book, but it does share a lot of themes and ideas. At the heart of the movie is the character of the giant who appears to be some sort of weapon, a war machine, but he chooses to be good, he chooses not to kill. Set in what is to the modern eye a is a more innocent time, a time when the world was in a post war boom the cold war was still relatively cold. But the red scare and the fear of nuclear war was real. In the mist of this the essance of death and killing, a weapon learns the beauty of the world, the importance of friendship and possibly the meaning of life. The beauty of it, is the purity, he learns it froma child with the innocence and optimism of a child. To top all this off the film doesn’t fall into all the usual clichéd problems of animation: cute animal sidekicks, impromptu song and dance numbers, innuendo filled comedy to keep the adults entertained.MCDIRGI EC011

I am not one to wax lyrical about look of animation, it doesn’t interest or excite me in the same way as cinematography, having said that The Iron Giant is both interesting and strangely pretty to look at. I’m told it employs a mixture of traditional and computer generated animation, but I really don’t care, how they achieved is insignificant, what they achieved is what matters. What they have achieved is a genuine family film. It isn’t a kids film with nods to adults, or an adults film watered down for kids, it is a film that can hold the interested of kids and adults alike, and one that parents can happily show to kids knowing it won’t be in any way unsuitable. It is a modern-day fairytale, a fairytale for a generation that doesn’t believe in fairytales. The voice cast includes Jennifer Aniston, Harry Connick Jr. and Vin Diesel, but this really isn’t that important. The delivery of the cast is good as is there comic timing, but there is nothing showy or ostentatious about it. A cynical person may suggest the 53 words spoken by the giant represents a larger vocabulary than Vin Diesel is used to delivering in a movie. However you look at it the cast do their job to great effect.The iron giant scrapyard

This is the second animated movie I have seen in the Blind Spot series, and while I sort of enjoyed Princess Mononoke and could see what others like about it, I actually liked and enjoyed The Iron Giant and will probably watch it again some day.

See the rest of the Blind Spot films for July HERE

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