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Pan'in Labirenti
Guillermo del Toro Ispanya, 2006
It hasn’t aged as well. The film is tactilely hypnotic and gorgeous in a fashion that few other contemporary filmmakers can muster, and so it feels churlish and literal-minded to voice dissatisfaction with it. But the characters are rigid symbols, and del Toro’s treatment of his various pet preoccupations is humorless… Yet, Pan’s Labyrinth is surpassingly beautiful, with intricate levels of subtlety existing underneath the film’s message concerning the coping powers of make-believe.
November 01, 2016
Bütün yazıyı oku
Though Pan’s Labyrinth regularly uses occurrences in Ofelia’s fantasy world to influence her normal life, del Toro truly reconciles the real and fantastic around the shared importance of stories. It’s a fitting theme with which to approach a war where so many were completely annihilated in ideological purges, and it explains why Vidal’s true comeuppance isn’t death, but the promise that he’ll be willfully forgotten by all who knew him.
October 20, 2016
Bütün yazıyı oku
One of the best films ever made from a child’s perspective, not least because it refuses to infantilize the audience. Is this deeply entrancing movie a historical war drama, a gothic horror-fantasy, or both? Remarkably, Del Toro doesn’t say. Instead he casts us headlong into a world where the evils of fascism have many faces, and where historical trauma runs so deep that it takes on the power of myth.
October 19, 2016
Bütün yazıyı oku
For American audiences who encountered the movie first as young teenagers and have in effect grown up with it, Pan’s Labyrinth remains a waymark, an intensely remembered catharsis of pubertal misery and lostness. My daughter, around thirteen when she first saw it, had her secret internal chaos affirmed with a mythic gravity. This is how myths work—by branding our own raw sense of life’s whirlwind with the fire of an epic travail.
October 18, 2016
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As the faun reveals the secrets of Ofelia’s origin to her, of a time before the bright sun blinded her and made her forget where she came from, the two levels of reality bleed seamlessly together. Inventive and gloomily majestic visual realization immerses us in a dark, primordial world in which the bookish girl senses what we all should know: that imagination as embodied by supreme freedom of thought is the essence of all resistance—a resistance that must name and repeat itself, over and over.
September 09, 2016
Bütün yazıyı oku
I can’t avoid copping to the fact that Del Toro’s sensibility just isn’t one I share. One of Labyrinth’s defining moves, and easily its boldest, is the fact that it dares to end up in such a dark, unleavened place, and I’m certain it’s this final-reel sucker punch that is sending audiences out of the film in awe, possibly having had its weaker moments summarily erased from memory. The problem, as I see it, has to do with an overarticulated commitment to genre.
January 15, 2007
Bütün yazıyı oku
Where Children of Men samples from Picasso, Pan’s Labyrinth shoots for Goya; however, rather than hanging Guernica beside a nudging Pink Floyd quote, del Toro aims to embody the mix of horror and wonder bleeding from Saturn Devouring his Son or The Incarnation.
January 12, 2007
Bütün yazıyı oku
A transcendent work of art. Del Toro’s gratifying surreal and fantastical instincts now have an unstinting moral eye on the world. Saying a filmmaker has matured suggests he’s forgone what made him so entertaining in the first place. But in evolving with this voluptuously realized film, with its omnipresent dangers, Del Toro has simply refined the deftness of his storytelling. A beautiful film about ugliness, “Pan’s Labyrinth” is still pure del Toro, but he gazes through a grim historical lens.
January 12, 2007
Bütün yazıyı oku
I can understand the deeply entrenched hatred of Franco’s fascist regime among Spanish-speaking artists like Mr. del Toro, but coupled with an addiction to the supernatural on a graphic level, the combination becomes too negatively spiritual for my taste. However, this is not to take anything away from the enormous talents of the director and his young star, Ms. Baquero, which make Pan’s Labyrinth eminently worth seeing despite its Manichean excesses.
January 08, 2007
Bütün yazıyı oku
This is as fine a bit of storytelling as the best Steven Spielberg narratives. Despite its realistic, graphic violence and buckets of blood, the movie rides a wave of enchantment by weaving its overt fairytale storyline subtly, but powerfully, into its real-world storyline to create a sublime sort of hybrid.
January 06, 2007
Bütün yazıyı oku
Del Toro’s adherence to a single genre in Pan’s Labyrinth, for which he wrote the screenplay, makes the film impressively personal and original. As a rule, horror-movie fantasies grow out of some version of humdrum reality, but there’s nothing remotely humdrum about the reality underlying Pan’s Labyrinth.
January 05, 2007
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Where the world up top is full of fascist spit and polish and sadistic violence for power’s sake — ever devoted to his beloved genre, del Toro rubs our faces in nearly unbearable defacings, both literal and symbolic — down below Ofelia finds, in the contents of her own troubled mind, terror aplenty and a subversive challenge to confront the wicked stepfather who’s ruining her life, and Spain’s.
December 27, 2006
Bütün yazıyı oku
This intense film, a mix of horror, fantasy, and history that convinces on all those levels and mixes them up with dizzying brio, is a searing cinematic experience, a beautiful, terrifying vision from writer-director Guillermo del Toro.
December 27, 2006
Del Toro understands the shadowy power of folk stories in which wicked stepparents dispose of unwanted youngsters, where witches and demons lurk behind kindly faces, and where the end of childhood is paved with blood and shattered illusions. His film ranks with the best examinations of children’s inner lives, but be warned: Its haunting insights are best left to adults.
December 27, 2006
Bütün yazıyı oku
Magic realism leavened with moral seriousness, Pan’s Labyrinth belongs with a handful of classic movie fantasies: Orphée, The Night of the Hunter, The Company of Wolves. Its key precursor, however, may be the greatest of Franco-era Spanish movies, The Spirit of the Beehive. Although utterly different types of filmmaking, each of these is the story of a brave little girl lost in a world of make-believe—at once an intuitive anti-fascist and the innocent victim of a monstrous system.
December 26, 2006
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No one’s going to argue with the elaborateness of this fantasy bric-a-brac (God bless production designers), but elaborate is a poor substitute for imaginative—except for those cheerleader critics who are laboring to make them synonymous. It’s precisely because del Toro’s film has none of the texture, mystery, and surprise of actual imagination that it’s garnered the plaudits it has.
December 11, 2006
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Evoking the early, metaphor-laden cinema of Victor Erice in manifesting a child’s fear and uncertainty through the gothic figurations of the imagination – not only in the overt parallel of the metamorphosed, humanized monster of Spirit of the Beehive, but also in the mythification of an absent father in El Sur – Pan’s Labyrinth is an intelligently rendered, provocative, and incisive cautionary tale on barbarism, repression, narcissism, rigid ideology, blind obedience, and inhumanity.
October 18, 2006
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Scene after scene proceed at a kind of default visual level, Del Toro emphasizing the broad stereotypes of his characters with overly simple visual iconography (Vidal’s dandyist fascism above all), undercuts his own fanciful militaristic-fantasy setting through sloppy writing, and unfolds everything as if by a diagram determined somewhere else in unyielding, square comic-book panels.
October 13, 2006
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This is a somber, lovely picture, set in Franco’s Spain a few years after that country’s civil war. It’s rich both in metaphorical terms and in literal ones. Del Toro’s imagery is so vivid and concrete that it’s likely to change the color of your sleep.
October 13, 2006
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Del Toro is smart but he’s no theoretician, and though he takes aim at fascism, his vision is scarcely surreal; though prone to sensualist shocks, his comic-con aesthetic is so tidy and discreetly alluring Buñuel might have called it bourgeois.
September 06, 2006
Bütün yazıyı oku
It’s as a filmmaker, rather than storyteller, that del Toro is most successful here: a disjunction remains between the story’s childlike form and its gruesome execution, but few directors are so adept at conveying both the uncanny in the real and the recognisable in the fantastic.
August 23, 2006
Bütün yazıyı oku