Ian's Movie Reviews
Short Reviews of Movies, Board Games, and Other Stuff

The Shape of Water

Its odd. When a movie is so critically acclaimed, as this one is, even if you like the film you feel the need to defend why you don’t rather love it. I guess there’s always part of us that need to explain our contrarian views, even if they are just slightly askance from the norm.

The Shape of Water mostly works as a modern fairy-tale, mostly, and as an atmospheric, gothic story. But to be honest, I wish the movie leaned into its fairy-tale aspects a little more, as there was too much about it that pulled it out of that realm.

I really liked Sally Hawkins in the lead role as the silent Eliza, and the first act of the film where we come to know her is the best stuff. However, I wasn’t a fan of the two supporting characters, one played by Richard Jenkins, the other by Octavia Spencer. They were the two primary forces that kept dragging this story out of the mythic realm and corrupting the more pure tone if felt like Del Toro wanted. Jenkin’s character of Giles in particular overstayed his welcome and his character’s presence felt more intrusive than anything else.

So… its not a masterpiece, buts its still pretty good, especially the first third or so.


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