From master storyteller, Guillermo del Toro, comes THE SHAPE OF WATER – an other-worldly fairy tale, set against the backdrop of Cold War era America circa 1963. In the hidden high security government laboratory where she works, lonely Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is trapped in a life of silence and isolation. Elisa’s life is changed forever when she and co-worker Zelda (Octavia Spencer) discover a secret classified experiment.
This marks del Toro’s return to small-scale filmmaking, following bigger, genre offerings such as the Hellboy films and Pacific Rim. It has been compared by many to his earlier fantasy movie, Pan’s Labyrinth in regards to tone and drew much inspiration from the classic monster flick The Creature from the Black Lagoon. In interviews, del Toro has made clear his intention to turn typical conventions on their head by having the female lead fall in love with the monster. Originally, del Toro had envisioned making The Shape of Water in black and white as a means of keeping the budget down, but the film is presented in color.
The Shape of Water toured the fall festival circuit in 2017, making stops at Venice (where it won the Golden Lion) and Toronto. It received widespread acclaim, with many critics praising del Toro’s eye for stunning visuals and a heartfelt, emotional story. Sally Hawkins also earned raves for her performance as Elisa, a mute janitor. Despite being a fantasy film, many are predicting The Shape of Water will be one of the top contenders at the Oscars due to its various merits.
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