Top critical review
Good film for older children - VERY different from book!
on 16 May 2016
I got this film for my kids to watch because my son is a big fan of the book. We all really enjoyed Ted Hughes story of the mysterious giant that comes to earth, and at first makes a nuisance of himself by eating all the local farmers' tractors and machinery, but redeems himself by saving the planet from an alien larger than Australia. This film is VERY different from the book, in fact, it is an almost entirely different story using the same two protagonists, the Iron Giant and Hogarth. In this version, there is an addition of an intrepid and slightly sinister government agent who is trying to track down the Iron Giant. Another character added is a somewhat beatnik-like junkyard sculpture artist (voiced by Harry Connick Jr) who aids Hogarth in protecting the giant from being found. The whole story comes to a very tense near-apocalyptic end with a standoff between the army and the Iron Giant, who somehow, threatened by their artillery, has transformed into a super weapon trying to destroy all the tanks and guns in sight. This tension, coupled with the violence of the last scene and the weirdly-inappropriate language for a U-rating - the government agent constantly shouts "What the hell?!" (ok, not the worst of expletives, but not something I would want anyone between the ages of 4 and 8 to be shouting out on the playground) much to my surprise and is, of course, picked up and repeated by my 5-yr old - make this a better option for older children. Although my 5-yr old is used to some animated violence, as in Ninjago and Power Rangers, it was more the language that I was opposed to that causes my rating to be only 3 stars.