Film Review: The Shape of Water
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Writer: Guillermo del Toro & Vanessa Taylor
Cinematography: Dan Laustsen
Cast: Sally Hawkins, Octavia Spencer, Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkins
Country of Origin: USA
Time: 123 mins.
Sal from Crome Yellow and I review some of the best films we saw at AFI FEST this year, including Guillermo del Toro's The Shape of Water. At a top secret research facility in the 1960s, Elisa, a mute janitor forms a unique relationship with an amphibious creature that is being held in captivity. No one does monsters movies quite like del Toro and it's safe to say that it's one of the most beautiful films I've ever had the pleasure of watching.
I went in the film without watching the trailer and in this case, that is the best way to way this film: without any prior knowledge. One of the most incredible aspect of this film is that it was made by someone who wholly appreciates monsters and the outsider perspective and it shows. It takes the classic fairy tale formula and spins it on its head to create another instant classic that's filled with luscious cinematography, heartfelt score by Alexandre Desplat, and a breathtaking ending that will engrave itself into your soul. It's an understatement when I say, The Shape of Water is one of my favorite films of the year. Not only does it show you the necessary power of fighting for what you love but also that love is singularly one of the most powerful tools, we as humans have.