The Iron Giant is Bigger Than That


Before Brad Bird made The Incredibles and Ratatouille, he made something else, a small movie, relatively, for Warner Bros. that might just be the best film he’ll ever make.

The Iron Giant

Brad Bird wrote the screenplay and directed the film. It was produced by Pete Townshend, of The Who, who had previously done his own rock opera based on the story. The story, The Iron Man, was written by Ted Hughes (1930-1998). Hughes, was was an English poet and children’s writer. He was British Poet Laureate from 1984 until his death.

He was married from 1956-63 to American poet Sylvia Plath, who committed suicide in 1963 at the age of 30.


Why the history lesson? Because the story deserves it. Because I watched the movie last night, for the whateverth time, and it was different. It was different because it was the first time that I’ve watched it with Atticus since he’s been able to follow, enjoy, and be mesmerized by the storyline and his own overwhelming passion for anything robot.

It was the first time we talked about death, and killing, and it was the first time I saw him sad with regard to such things.

“It’s bad to kill,” they say in the film, “But it’s okay to die.”

They don’t paint it any more true or simple than that. It is moving. It moves 4-year-old boys full of wonder and innocence, and their hardened 36-year-old fathers, equally.

Ted Hughes wrote the story for his children, to help them cope with the death of their mother; and he wrote it for us, to help answer questions that children are bound to have. Questions abound.

Yet, it is not all about the passing of things, but the creation as well. It is about being what you want to be, defining identity, not accepting it. It leans to the left in a world where right is often wrong, but it remains firmly centered. It is not about politics or religion. It is about life.

Ted Hughes is dead. Pete Townshend has troubles. Brad Bird is a young man, just hitting his stride, but he has already left his mark.

The climax of the movie revolves around choice and sacrifice. The Iron Giant does what he does, with the echo of these words rattling inside his metal head, “You are what you choose to be.”

That scene tears me up every time, and I hope that it always does. The day that I stop feeling in that moment is the day I’ve stopped choosing, and you can bury me then.

Just remember when that day comes, that it is okay to die.

In the meantime, I have choices to make, and a summer’s day made for prolonging innocence and watching my boys fill with wonder.

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Share

One Response to “The Iron Giant is Bigger Than That”

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge

This is My Book:
This is Where You Buy It:

This is the Best of Me:
When Stuffed Animals Die * From Forever to the Sea * Between the Groundwork and Soft Foreshadows * Son of Tucson * To Seattle, With Love * There's Never Stopping in a White Zone * Stars Upon Thars * Things We Do Like The Dickens * 26.2 * Of Mice, Men & Murder as a Lullaby * When We've First Begun * The Night Kitchen * Of Walking the Line * A Brother & His Keeper * World Where We Live * Business Socks * An Award by any Other Name * Choose Your Own Adventure * The Bite of Bread & Bunnies * Between the Channels * A Band of Brothers * A Dog Day Afternoon and Into the Night * Between the Wood & Frozen Lake * Po-tate-o, Po-taut-o * Tales of a Playground Loner * Waiting on Norman * There's a Sad Sort of Clanging From the Clock Down the Hall * Occupy Childhood * Backyard and the Twilight * FOUR! * For Ghosts of Christmas Past * An Open Letter to Atticus * An Open Letter to Zane * The Road Also Rises * And Scene * For Tomorrow May Rain * New Toilet Training * The Middle of the Moon * Sunday in a Sandbox * A Note on Friendship * A Mother's Arms are Made of Tenderness & Children Sleep Soundly in Them * I'm Going to Carry This Weight a Long Time * A Handy Guide for Young Lovers and Careless Swimmers * One Long True Sentence That I Added Punctuation To * Of Negatives, Positives & the Sparks Between * Of Peanuts and Cracker Jack and the Fences We Swing For * Left for Dead by a Prattling Brook * Stuffing Sorries in a Sack * Parenting on a Budget (Or the Lack Thereof) * A Long Day & Many Short Years * Bad News for Beautiful Mornings * The Roughness of Sand is Relative * A Simple Season of Starlight and Splendor * An Introduction to Terror * California Dreamin' * The Sound of Settling * 40 * On Means to the End * How to Cry on Valentine's Day * In Defense of Boys * This Old Night * Once They Sang Like Peacocks * The Day Was Mixed With Foul and Rye * Small Steps in the Starlight * Two Note * The Springtime of Our Youth * Zane's Trains & Deadlinemobiles * Put One Foot in Front of the Other * Rainy Days & Mondays * Of Seasons and Fleeting * And Children Get Older, Too * You Know We'll Have a Good Time Then
This is Where I Write:
This is Entertainment:
This is Where I Pin Stuff:
Follow Me on Pinterest
This is Video:
Subscribe to me on YouTube
These are Pictures:
Instagram
This is Where I Tumble for Ya:
This is for the Twhitterpated:
This is XY Media:

photo

This is Where You Validate My Life:

This is Where You Look for Stuff:
This is Where You Follow My Feed:
This is What Johnny Cash Thought:

This is Some News Thing: