I Kill Giants is not the type of movie you expect it to be. At first glance, it’s a fantasy adventure, featuring a girl ready to be a warrior, but when you look closer it’s actually a heartwarming and inspirational tale of a teenager who finds a way to overcome her own demons.
Based on the acclaimed graphic novel by Joe Kelly and Ken Niimura, I Kill Giants is “an epic adventure about a world beyond imagination. Teen Barbara Thorson is the only thing that stands between terrible giants and the destruction of her small town. But as she boldly confronts her fears in increasingly dangerous ways, her new school counselor leads her to question everything she’s always believed to be true. I Kill Giants is an intense, touching story about trust, courage and love from the producers that brought you Harry Potter.”
We had a chance to chat with Madison Wolfe, who plays Barbara Thorson, the main character in the film, and, if possible, came out of the interview even more excited for everyone to experience the story this wonderful, female-dominated cast, has brought to life.
Because, we all face our metaphorical giants in life, and Barbara gives us hope that we can too, overcome them, not necessarily with brute strength or even with our brains, but with our hearts.
Madison was very candid about what this meant to her, and about how she hoped the movie would help people pause and bring awareness to “the fact that you never really know what people are going through.” Everyone has their own monsters “and if you just take a second to talk to them and kind of break through their shell, that you might end up really, really building a strong friendship with them and really, really helping them in the long run.”
This goes along with the true message of the film, which isn’t really about giants, but about overcoming your own demons, and being yourself, despite what the world around you might think of that.
“I just hope people take away the message that they’re stronger than they think.” Madison added, to questions of what she hoped people, and maybe, teenagers in particular, would take from this film.
But, the film also sends a strong message about strength, about how there’s more than one way to be strong, more than one way to be good, and how people so often cling to stereotypes because they have a hard time understanding anyone who’s different.
Barbara is different, yes. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
As for what the biggest challenge was in embodying this, Madison shared that the fact that the character she played had so many layers was the most complicated thing to portray. “You know, on the inside she’s really vulnerable, but on the outside she’s super, super tough.”
She also added “I think it shows that you don’t have to be just one thing. You know, like young girls and teenagers, or really everyone, you could just be yourself.”
Isn’t that just a beautiful message to send? And you thought this movie was about monsters.
Madison continued: “And everyone has different personality traits. Everyone likes a bunch of different things. You know, it’s not just stereotypical you can be in one group. And I think it’s a really good message to portray that you never really know what’s going on in a person’s life and how many things are happening.”
That can, of course, be hard to play convincingly, but this movie does a great job of striking that balance between sorta action film and actual, sentimental journey, and a great part of that is because of Madison’s desire to make Barbara a role model, not just for young girls, but for anyone who might be watching.
“I think that she can definitely be a role model because in a way she doesn’t really care what other people think. You know, she dresses how she wants. And even though everyone is telling her you’re crazy for believing in these giants, she still continues to do it and do what she really believes in and kind of stand up for herself.”
And that’s a message we could all strive to learn.
Check out the official trailer for I Kill Giants below, and share your thoughts in the comments below!
I Kill Giants is in select theaters and On Demand today, March 23. Find it on iTunes.