The movie begins with a young orphan named Sophia lurking around her orphanage alone during the "witching hour" late at night after everyone else has fallen asleep. Peaking out a window she notices a large, cloaked shadow blowing what appears to be a trumpet into a second story window down the street. The shadowy figure notices he is being watched and suddenly gigantic fingers pluck the girl from the window of her orphanage bedroom. Afraid that this little girl will tell adults of what she saw which will lead to them hunting down the creature, Sophia is smuggled away to Giant Land. While initially afraid that her giant captor will eat her for dinner, she soon finds out that he is a Big Friendly Giant (BFG) who doesn't eat children but rather subsists through eating a foul smelling, nasty looking vegetable known as a snozzcumber. Though BFG's Gobblefunk language may be a bit odd, Sophia discovers the giant to be a gentle, kind soul who strives to improve children's lives during his visits to the land of humankind.
Unfortunately for Sophia, the other inhabitants of Giant Country love to eat children and soon catch wind of her scent. As they seek her out, Sophia witnesses BFG's brothers bully and brutalize him as the runt of their band of giants. Plus Sophia learns that while BFG visits London and the other cities where humans live to blow dreams into sleeping children's heads with his magical trumpet, Bloodbottler, Fleshlumpeater, and other ferocious giants roam the world secretly snatching children in the dark of night to eat. She comes up with a plan to ask the Queen of England for help in combating the brutish giants. Can Sophia and BFG convince Queen Victoria to help them stop the bad giants from eating children once and for all?
Grade school children will definitely enjoy Disney's The BFG because Spielberg faithfully transforms Dahl's text from a book which has captivated young readers for more than 30 years to maintain the ambiance which has made it one of the most popular school age reading books of all time. The movie is like watching the imagery from a grade school book pop out of its pages and play out in front of you and does a remarkable job of incorporating elements of The BFG's original illustrations by Quentin Blake into the film's live action sequences. A nice touch to the movie is that it is set in 1982 which is the year the book was published. Can you notice the details in the movie which highlight the era in which the story is set?
I'm not normally a big fan of 3D movies but The BFG is one that is worth wearing the glasses to see at the theater. The 3D really helps subtly provide depth to the elements and special effects in a story where height and size play a crucial role in its plot. The 3D doesn't provide any mind-blowing visual effects but it does enhance the overall viewing experience.
The BFG is rated PG. The rating is due to younger audiences potentially being sensitive to a dream sequence involving a giant eating a child, scenes with the band of giants beating up and bullying BFG, scenes with the brutish giants searching for Sophia so they can eat her, and references to the bad giants stealing and eating children from around the world. I would recommend the movie for children 6 to 12 years old which is the same audience for the book. Younger children could be scared by some scenes and some teens and adults could be bored by the film which is based on a book meant for kids to read. If your child enjoys Roald Dahl books, and you liked reading them yourself as a kid, this movie is well worth going to see.
movies.disney.com/the-bfg. Also visit, roalddahl.com for more information about the author and the Roald Dahl 100th Anniversary Celebration.