I have reviewed a ton of animated films here. I adore them. Especially in the last 10-15 years since they have become more for entire families and not just loud silly movies for toddlers. Brad Bird would go on to become one of Disney’s most beloved animated directors with classics like The Incredibles and Ratatouille under his belt and then going beyond animation with fantastic films like Tomorrowland and Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (one of the best action movies of all time in my opinion). And it looks like he may be returning to animation in 2019 with The Incredibles 2. But before all of that, in 1999, he made a little animated film called The Iron Giant for Warner Bros Animation. And it has finally arrived on Blu-ray with a new Signature Edition that is definitely worth the wait.
Hogarth Hughes (Eli Marienthal) is a regular nine-year-old boy in 1950s small town America. One night while playing in the forest by his home, Hogarth stumbles upon a massive robot that fell from the sky. To protect the giant from snooping government agent Kent Mansley (Christopher McDonald) he hides the robot in the local junkyard run my Dean McCoppin (Harry Connick Jr.) but he can only hide a giant robot for so long. And there may be things about it he doesn’t know that could jeopardize everything.
The Iron Giant has one thing going for it beyond many animated films. Loads of heart. This is childhood nostalgia at its purest and most entertaining. The animation style is retro but still stunningly beautiful, the voice work is top notch across the board, the story is wonderfully written, poignant, funny and timely, even today, and Bird’s direction is practically flawless in execution. The Iron Giant is an understated masterpiece that deserves more recognition; hopefully this new special edition will help achieve that.
Aside from a beautiful transfer, you also get an all new documentary on the making of the film, the original theatrical version of the film along with the new signature edition that includes addition scenes, new feature length commentaries, deleted scenes and much more. The Iron Giant: Signature Edition is a phenomenal Blu-ray debut of one of the best animated films ever, do yourself a favor and check it out. Very highly recommended.