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The Iron Giant (1999)

PG  |   |  Animation, Action, Adventure  |  6 August 1999 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 120,140 users   Metascore: 85/100
Reviews: 505 user | 157 critic | 27 from Metacritic.com

A boy makes friend with a robot from outer space, but the army are not happy with a robot in the city.



(screenplay), (screen story), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Annie Hughes (voice)
Dean McCoppin (voice)
The Iron Giant (voice)
Mrs. Tensedge (voice)
Kent Mansley (voice)
General Rogard (voice)
Hogarth Hughes (voice)
Earl Stutz (voice)
Jack Angel ...
Additional Voices (voice)
Additional Voices (as Robert Bergen)
Mary Kay Bergman ...
Additional Voices (voice)
Michael Bird ...
Additional Voices (voice)
Devon Cole Borisoff ...
Additional Voices (voice) (as Devon Borisoff)
Additional Voices (voice)


This is the story of a nine-year-old boy named Hogarth Hughes who makes friends with an innocent alien giant robot that came from outer space. Meanwhile, a paranoid U.S. Government agent named Kent Mansley arrives in town, determined to destroy the giant at all costs. It's up to Hogarth to protect him by keeping him at Dean McCoppin's place in the junkyard. Written by Anthony Pereyra <hypersonic91@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It came from outer space!

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for fantasy action violence, language, some thematic material and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

6 August 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El gigante de hierro  »

Box Office


$48,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,732,614 (USA) (6 August 1999)


£2,456,310 (UK) (4 February 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


"Frank" and "Ollie", the two trainmen that Kent interviews after the derailment, are caricatures of Disney classic animators Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston. They also perform the voices for the characters. Animation writer Earl Kress has said "that Frank and Ollie are also life-long train enthusiasts and have extensive scale model railroads in their backyards like Walt Disney used to have." See more »


When Hogarth leaves the house to encounter the giant for the first time, a crescent moon is shown touching the horizon. The TV station has not signed off, and the plot suggests it is a time when kids are in bed but adults are still up, so it has to be before midnight. However, the moon's crescent is to the left, which would indicate a waning moon rising in the east shortly before sunrise. See more »


Hogarth Hughes: I thought you might like, you know, a bedtime story. I have some really cool ones. Mad Magazine - very funny. The Spirit - very cool. Boy's Life - eh. Oh, here. This is Superman. He's a lot like you. Crash-landed on Earth, didn't know what he was doing... but he only uses his powers for good, never for evil. Remember that.
[Giant looks at a comic with a robot like himself on the cover]
Hogarth Hughes: Oh, that's Atomo, the metal menace. He's not a hero, he's a villain. But you're not like him. You're a good guy...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Warner Brothers logo is done in 50's art deco, as the Sputnik signal is heard. See more »


Referenced in The Pixar Story (2007) See more »


Written by Bob Merrill
Performed by Jimmie Rodgers
Courtesy of Rhino Entertainment Company
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A very good movie....
31 December 1999 | by (Maryland, USA) – See all my reviews

Hmmm, what to say...well.... it was really good. I've seen it several times, and I've enjoyed it immensely each time for different reasons.

Analytically I find the animation incredible. The characters are extremely alive and quite realistic, not because of incredible drawing, well, actually, yes: the way the characters are drawn, and animated, is incredible. From the jerking, swaying and swooshing of body parts to the magnificent and CONSISTENT use of eyes, eyebrows and cheekbones to show real emotions, it's definite that this movie is a masterpiece in terms of animation. The backgrounds are wonderfully lush, and evoke a wonderful sense of everything that shows fall for the beautiful season it is. I love animation, and I love good looking landscapes, so the artists behind this movie are making a fan out of me very quickly.

I admire (analytically) most of all the enormous apparance of little details in the film: the season sublty changes from fall to winter; the characters are always doing something, even if they aren't directly in focus (the best ad-libbing a director could dream of); I also think in some parts of the movie the little details actually become crucial to the movie's strength and validity (the time and setting of the story help it to make more sense, also, the "duck and cover" scene)

You know, I think it's amazing when sometimes a movie can move you so much, talking about it's good qualities seems like child's play. This is the kind of movie that you can watch over and over and take a long time to get sick of. We all have movies like that, very few can do that to us, but we have them. I'm realising as I write that I like this movie very much, because I've written two or three paragraphs and have not even started talking about the iron giant yet.

The animation and expression of emotion in the giant, who is a computer graphics animated character, a hundred feet tall and with a certain old time sci fi persona to him, equals and even surpasses it's traditionally animated companions. There were scenes in the movie that the giant almost made me cry because of his expressions. The director, Brad Bird I think, should earn good credit for his work bringing the giant to life. The giant was very organic and fluid, always animated and extremely alive, without really trying to be. After a while it obvious he's not your average rigid robot.

It's hard not to give away details when you write a lot, but thankfully I haven't really given anything away. I will say this...the movie is about not prejudging things you are unfamiliar with, big or small, and it's about doing what is right and not using gray areas and politics as an excuse not to do the right thing. The movie explores the strange concept of finding friendship, love, and innocence inbetween past guilts and prejudices. It is one of the most well rounded, enriching, thought provoking movies I have seen in my lifetime, and the best part is that it wasn't the visual effects that made me say that...something other feature animation companies have used a a string to lead me on for almost a decade. I feel like I just recovered from an extended brainwashing experiment. I've learned my lesson. No longer will movies that use stunning graphics to redeem themselves be an interest to me. Rather I will watch movies for the messages they give and the depth those movies have. If anything Brad Bird must have tried to make the giant as close in simplicity to the regular animated characters as possible, because you CANNOT tell the difference between CG and traditional in this movie. Exceptional stuff.

I can't imagine anyone I know not liking this movie. I've shown it to a LOT of people, college students mostly, of all races and religions, with different prides and prejudices, the result, amazingly, always seems to be the same: I have some after movie comments here, and I quote:"Wow!" ; "That was NICE!"; "That was SO...GOOD!" ;"That giant is crucial, dog!" ;"It was good...yeah...I liked it!",; and "Dang man, that joint TIGHT!". If you actually read this review all the way, that's nice. Now forget everything I bumbled about and go see this movie, that way you can spent less time writing your own review than you did reading mine.

63 of 73 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The score (music if you will) is just ok .... Sean_Pierce
The Iron Giant: Signature Edition - Theatrical Re-release Director's Cut shaneponeal
This is one of my favorite films. A truly wonderful film. goodvibe61
Why The Ending is Bad mgrad784
iTunes Iron Giant is NOT the Signature Edition. bberburb-29149
Watched this for the first time in over 10 years... bdem
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