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What Exactly is “The BFG”?

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So, what exactly is “The BFG”? “The BFG” or The Big Friendly Giant, while a giant himself, is nothing like the other inhabitants of Giant Country. Standing 24-feet tall with enormous ears and a keen sense of smell, he is endearingly dim-witted and keeps to himself for the most part.

From the human beans that brought you E.T. and the author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Matilda comes “THE BFG”! I admit I’m unsure. I’m a huge fan of E.T., a so-so fan of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and not really a fan at all of Matilda. So I’m hopeful that mixing all that went into those three will make a big hit out of “The BFG.”

bfg book

The original children’s story was written in 1982 and later became an animated television movie. There is a long list of characters that all work together in telling the story:

  • Sophie: The heroine
  • The BFG: A 24-foot-tall individual who has superhuman hearing abilities and immense speed. His primary occupation is the collection and distribution of good dreams to children.
  • The Queen of England
  • Mary: The Queen’s Maid
  • Mr. Tibbs: The Palace butler
  • Mrs. Clonkers: The unseen director of the orphanage in which Sophie lives at the start of the story
  • Head of the Army
  • Head of the Air Force
  • King of Sweden
  • Sultan of Baghdad
  • Monsieur Papillon
  • Nine anthropophagus giants, each approx. 50 ft. tall and powerful:
    • The Manhugger
    • The Meatdripper
    • The Childchewer
    • The Butcher Boy
    • The Bloodbottler
    • The Maidmasher
    • The Fleshlumpeater
    • The Bonecruncher
    • The Gizzardgulper

I admit, I like the story. 

The story follows a young orphaned girl named Sophie, living in a girl’s orphanage run by the cantankerous Mrs. Clonkers. One night, Sophie sees a cloaked giant blowing something via a trumpet-like object into a bedroom window down the street; whereupon the giant carries her to his homeland of Giant Country. There, he identifies himself as the Big Friendly Giant (‘BFG’), who nightly blows bottled dreams into the bedrooms of children, and explains the other type of giants that eat humans, mostly children. Because the BFG refuses to eat people or steal food from humans, he subsists on a foul-tasting vegetable known as a snozzcumber.

Sophie and the BFG quickly become friends; but Sophie is soon put in danger by the sudden arrival of the Bloodbottler Giant, who suspects the BFG of harboring Sophie. Sophie hides in the snozzcumber, unknown to the BFG, and the BFG offers the snozzcumber to the Bloodbottler, hoping that its foul taste will repel him from the area; whereupon the Bloodbottler spits out the snozzcumber and Sophie, and leaves in disgust. When Sophie announces she is thirsty, the BFG treats her to a fizzy drink called frobscottle, which causes noisy flatulence: this is known as Whizzpopping. The next morning, the BFG takes Sophie to Dream Country to catch more dreams, but is tormented by the other giants along the way; notably by their leader, the Fleshlumpeater, the largest and most fearsome.

I like the story because of the message it contains and I’m hoping the message will shine through. It’s a story about loyalty and friendship and protecting our friends ~ a perfect and valuable lesson for children (and adults) to learn.



“The BFG” opens in U.S. theaters on July 1, 2016, the year that marks the 100th anniversary of the author, Roald Dahl’s, birth. Dahl’s other books include “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “James and the Giant Peach” and “Matilda.” Originally created as a bedtime story, “The BFG” was Dahl’s own favorite of all his stories. “It was very important for us to be loyal to the language,” says Spielberg, “and the great writer Melissa Mathison, who also wrote ‘E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial,’ wrote ‘The BFG.’”

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THE BFG hits theaters everywhere on July 1st!

“The BFG” is directed by three-time Academy Award® winner Steven Spielberg (“Bridge of Spies,” “Schindler’s List,” ”Saving Private Ryan”) from a screenplay by Melissa Mathison (“E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial,” “The Black Stallion”) and based on the best-selling novel by Roald Dahl. The film is produced by Spielberg, Frank Marshall (“Jurassic World,” “The Bourne Ultimatum”) and Sam Mercer (“Snow White and the Huntsman,” “The Sixth Sense”) with Kathleen Kennedy (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Lincoln”), John Madden (“The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” “Shakespeare in Love”), Kristie Macosko Krieger (“Bridge of Spies,” “Lincoln”), Michael Siegel (“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Rise of the Guardians”), Frank Smith and Naia Cucukov serving as executive producers.