I watched The Iron Giant last evening. I’m a huge fan of animation and had heard good things about this movie, so it surely took me long enough to get around to seeing it. It is a good movie and while the plot is typical kid movie fare, the art is very well done, and it has some subtle layers that provide both contemporary and historical parallels.
Taking place in the late fifties, Cold War paranoia is becoming increasingly institutionalized in American society. A power-mad government official associated with national security is willing to go to any lengths, including the drugging of a small boy and nuking a small town in Maine to protect the country from nebulously perceived foreign threats.
This movie was made in 1999.
The kid, Hogarth, appeals to me because he basically acts like I acted when I was a kid. He even brings home forest critters and straps on army surplus issue and stomps off into the woods for adventures. I never found a huge robot though. The references to the Golden Age of science fiction abound, and appeal to my never nascent nerdiness.
Hogarth’s mom is a single parent working hard [and late] to do right by her kid, which was likely an even tougher gig back in the fifties. We never find out if Hogarth’s dad died, or if his mom is still unmarried. Pops is just…absent.
That’s all I got.