This critically acclaimed, engaging and brilliantly animated adventure is a simple but touching tale about a giant metal machine that drops from the sky onto a small town in 1958 Maine, frightening almost everyone witless.
Gradually, the iron giant (Vin Diesel) sets about changing the local people's perceptions, after finding a friend in Hogarth Hughes (Eli Marienthal) and finally committing the ultimate act of heroism by unselfishly saving people from their own fears and prejudices
The story is drawn from a classic children's novel by former Poet Laureate Ted Hughes. The film features the voices of Friends star Jennifer Aniston and singer/actor Harry Connick Jr in some memorable comic moments.
Director Brad Bird switched the story to the 1950s in order to cash in on the mood of paranoia of the time. At the height of the Cold War, there was an ongoing fear of anything foreign. This is represented on-screen by the villain Kent Mansley (voiced by Christopher McDonald, star of The Perfect Storm), who tries to convince the other villagers that the giant is part of a Communist plot to destabilise the country's national security.
Brad Bird made a name for himself with television gems such as The Simpsons, The Critic and King Of The Hill.