A boy finds this creature from outer space, teaches it about the world, tries but fails to convince anyone about his discovery and later the government attempts to hunt down the creature. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial right? Yes, and no. Though very similar and a lot less content worries, The Iron Giant, set in the 1950s when the Russians had just deployed the Sputnik into space, distinguishes itself from E.T. by one, 100 ft. metal man.
Sent from outer space to be “a weapon” to destroy humans, the Iron Giant is remarkably friendly to humans. He soon befriends an 11 year-old pet-addicted boy, Hogarth, who had saved him from a close-to-death electrocution during the Giants feast on the metal of an electric station. Lonely for a companion, Hogarth visits the Giant and teaches him about the world. Thus begins the mental journey of the Iron Giant into the world of humans.
Meanwhile, the government is called up about some weird discoveries. They send an agent by the name of Kent Mansley to investigate. He first dismisses the idea of a metal-eating Giant as too eccentric, but then after finding his car with a huge bite and a second later vanished completely, he calls the government which instructs him to find more evidence. Immediately, Kent suspects Hogarth and after many annoying and desperate inquiries he discovers a picture of Hogarth and the Giant. The next day, the army is in their backyard.
The Iron Giant, rated PG for some violence, some bathroom humor and a bunch too many swears and misuses of God’s name, is both hilarious but also heartbreaking, yet unlike many animation films, viewers will find its message comparably heavy and touching deeply on the truth of death and souls. There is one thing I disliked though. Every scene all are straight to the point and are never out of place. It would could have been extended by 15 more minutes and still prove the important points. Frankly, although the story is not new to most of us, The Iron Giant easily bests the others in creativity and spiritual truth (but not all on family-friendly content). Just as Hogarth says to the Giant, “You don’t have to be a gun. You are what you choose to be,” we should not base ourselves on what others believe and want us to be. “Superman…”