The Daily Wire
E.T. gets his freak on with a harlequin beauty in Mexican director Guillermo Del Toro’s whimsically-shot yet wickedly perverse social justice jackhammer dressed up in adult Disney drag.
It would be entirely disingenuous of me if I didn’t say that Del Toro’s “The Shape of Water” is one of most visually striking films since Alex Proyas’ “Dark City” or Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s “Amelie.” If movies were graded solely on their aesthetics, then “The Shape of Water” would get the “Christmas Story” treatment: A+ to infinity.
Unlike the revolving spate of glorified-television-shows-masquerading-as-comic-book-movies or the banal-assembly-line-of-social-justice-sermonizing-mistaken-for-arthouse-fare (*cough* “Moonlight”), “The Shape of Water” is a work of true cinema. From the 1960’s set-pieces to the top-secret underground lairs to the gracefully leaping camera to Sally Hawkins’ vulnerably silent performance, Del Toro has crafted a visual masterpiece.
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Del Toro’s story, written in concert with Vanessa Taylor, leaving us with something our senses can’t quite grasp. A story that feels emotionally false, manipulative, hackneyed, and worse, Machiavellian.
The values governing “The Shape of Water” are best summed up as follows: have sex with anything you want, even if that “thing” is not of your species, and kill innocent people to do it . . . Fin!
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