Director: Guillermo del Toro
Writer/s: Guillermo del Toro, Vanessa Taylor
Starring: Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkins, Octavia Spencer, Michael Stuhlbarg, Doug Jones, and more.
If you are savvy with the films “Pacific Rim”, “Hellboy”, and/or “Pan’s Labyrinth”, then you may be familiar with the name Guillermo del Toro. With my next installment of my Oscars 2018 reviews, I am tackling his Oscar nominated film “The Shape of Water”. Early on, I caught the trailer to this film and it gathered my attention. The film seemed unique and mysteriously alluring. If you would have asked me at the time when I saw the trailer, I would not have been able to speculate it would be an Oscar contender but now I will make an Oberrating to see if I believe it should be held in such high regards.
“At a top secret research facility in the 1960s, a lonely janitor forms a unique relationship with an amphibious creature that is being held in captivity.”
The majority response when one is asked what they thought of “The Shape of Water”. I mean, I can not disagree. Once the film comes to an end, you find yourself more than likely gathering your thoughts from such a unique and different film. Well I would say it is safe to assume that was the goal of Del Toro. To deliver an experience of a film rarely seen. With this said, Del Toro delivered.
For myself, “The Shape of Water” was a beautifully done adult fairy-tale. The story of forbidden love done by Del Toro was magical to watch. To compliment such a story was the excellent performance by Sally Hawkins without speaking a single word. Sally was not alone, however, as the whole lot of the cast did an immaculate job all together. Especially Michael Shannon as Richard Strickland.
Overall, the film was a masterfully done project, stylistically all the way to performance. It is well deserving of the awards it has received and may received in the near future.
However, for a raw Oberrating, this film did not blow me away much like other Oscar contenders. While I fully appreciate Del Toro’s monster fairy-tale, the film kind of dragged for me. Throughout the film it was sporadic in regards to moments that I found myself interested in what was occurring versus sitting idly as a slower moment presented itself and ultimately these slower moments came too frequently for my taste.
Del Toro masterfully fashions yet another monster movie yet this time, fast paced action or building tall beasts are not a fore-front. This time, the monster is in the form of an amphibious creature… or is the monster in the form of humans themselves? Regardless, “The Shape of Water” is well worth the watch and is more than deserving of award attention. Despite my personal opinion on blinking in and out of attention throughout the film, it was still an enjoyable piece of entertainment to watch and a showcasing of Del Toro’s master story telling.