Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Pan's Labyrinth

I took a wander this afternoon and felt myself pulled towards the local (and yet at the same time oh so far away Odeon)'s like a comfort blanket. I wasn't sure which kind of mood I was in and there was a fleeting moment that I was about to cave, to an easy and undemanding viewing experience, and watch Tenacious D: Pick of Destiny....I could indeed use a laugh. That film however was minutes away from starting and every person in front of me in the queue seemed to be opting for that particular flick. I wasn't so much in the mood for being surrounded by people with popcorn, nachos, ice cream and other extortionately priced junk items with ludicrous noisy packaging, so I decided upon the Mexican/Spanish fantasy Pan's Labyrinth.

I'm certainly glad I did. It inevitably won't be to everybody's taste, some people may balk at the idea of having to read subtitles (shoot me down for even suggesting it), others may have problems with some of the visuals (which were occasionally bloody and squirmy viewing)....but I was enthralled by the mixture of civil war story/dreamlike fantasy.

There was some great special effects (which were not over used, a pet hate of mine in many modern films) and there was an enchanting mix of Alice in Wonderland, Grimms fairy tales, many of Roald Dahl books and an ending reminiscent of The Water Babies ( that's not the film but the book, which had an altogether darker tone to the story). The overall look and themes of the film were interestingly dark (and at times a tad 'hide behind the couch scary', see pic), though anyone familiar with director Guillermo Del Toro's The Devil's Backbone should appreciate this reasoning.

If you do fancy giving this film a go, and I heartily recommend that you do, watch it with an open mind and you won't leave disappointed. Seriously, you've got rebellion exchanges with a mightily nasty military captain juxtaposed with a lonely young girls quest to find an enchanted underground kingdom....what's not to like?

Alternatively you could also choose to spend your 6 quid on The Santa Clause 3, or perhaps Jackass the Movie 2......though you will go straight to hell for having a particularly crap and misguided perception of what makes good cinema!


Josh said...

I guess hell awaits me


Emma said...

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