Guillermo Del Toro is a fascinating director, albeit not one that I have a ton of familiarity with. I do know that he’s been trying for years to make a film adaptation of The Witches, one of my favorite books. Hopefully, the success of this film will finally let Del Toro get The Witches made, but in the meantime, at least we have The Shape Of Water, a surprisingly beautiful film that shows Del Toro’s amazing talent.
What really strikes me about this film is how it feels like a fairytale. The film’s atmosphere makes it seem almost like a live action Disney movie, but with more swearing. It’s clear that Del Toro has a strong vision, and it comes through in every frame.
Outside of the direction, where this movie shines is in the overall presentation. Expect this movie to pick up a number of Tech Oscars. The set design is truly phenomenal, the score is astonishingly beautiful, and I like how the creature is brought to life using a combination of makeup and visual effects. More movies need to take note.
The entire cast is amazing. Sally Hawkins and Richard Jenkins both play very layered and likable characters. Michael Shannon and Octavia Spencer are also very good, even though neither of them stray very far from their ‘types’.
The Shape Of Water is a truly impressive film, and it’s definitely worth seeing. It will surely go down as one of the year’s best films, and I cannot reccomend it highly enough.
**** out of ****