CINEMA

The Shape of Water

POSTED BY: SHINYGOODGUY
UPDATED: Sunday, December 10, 2017 20:29
SHORT URL:
VIEWED: 420
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Saturday, December 9, 2017 8:36 AM

SHINYGOODGUY


No doubt you've heard of this film:

1- Guillermo Del Toro produced, wrote and directed
2- Sally Hawkins performance
3- Oscar Buzz

Before I get into that, The Shape of Water is a classic love tale, a fable, a love letter to the members of the Lonely Hearts Club. It is an unusual love tale, and almost feels like a classic love story, but it has it's quirks and idiosyncrasies. It is indeed peculiar, but, at the same time, it delivers beauty beyond the delicious set pieces that takes us back to the 60s. Del Toro lavishes the fable with languid and slightly puerile overtones, although subtle. Despite it's childlike charm it delivers some scenes with an acute adult sentiment.

To me it felt like a "once upon a time' there was this woman who could not speak due to a childhood accident kind of fable. An adult bedtime story that proclaimed the truth about true love, destiny and honoring the self. It is about knowing just exactly who you are. Del Toro wrote a beautiful, quirky and seemingly old fashioned homage to the simpler days of a bygone era. One where men were men and women knew their place. But fear not it doesn't get too much into the real world, even when our heroine's world becomes ensnared with that of reality.

Sally Hawkins is Eliza Esposito, a young woman who is mute and works as a cleaning woman in a government facility filled with top secrets, chief among them a new discovery found in the jungles of South America. Michael Shannon is Strickland, a government agent who is in charge of the special creature captured in the jungle.
He is pitch perfect as the villain and teeter-totters on the edge of sanity as he looks to complete his assignment - produce a specimen to send into space in lieu of a human. That is the plot, which made sense to me because this was also Del Toro's homage to Creature from the Black Lagoon. Octavia Spencer plays her best friend Zelda and plays a key role, as does character actor Richard Jenkins, who should get an Oscar nod for supporting actor. He was so good as Eliza's good neighbor Giles.

Let's get to the meat of this film; the fantastically talented Sally Hawkins. Her performance drives this movie as she chews up the screen with her passion and inner beauty. I was transfixed as I watched her command of her body, expressions and just overall bravura. She became Eliza Esposito. It reminded me of the performance by Ernie Borgnine in Marty from the 1950s. This movie is her baby - she gave birth and nurtured it along, fed it, bathed it and taught it how to live life. She breathed life into the film and gave it purpose and meaning. She will definitely get an Oscar nomination - and for my money, she should win for Best Actress.

I'm not sure though about the film's chances, but I think it will get a nomination for Best Film. But I think it will either be Wind River or 3 Billboards. Now, don't get me wrong this is not strictly a love story, there is some action as the film covers the "Cold War" period of the times which involves espionage and intrigue with Russians. But that's just a backdrop to the main part of the story.
It seemed to me that Del Toro was looking to say that not all spies are necessarily bad. But I will not spoil it for anyone here. This is a wonderful movie and worth every penny. Del Toro does it again, although it's not as strong as Pan's Labyrinth, it is still quite good.


SGG

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Saturday, December 9, 2017 10:45 AM

SISTER


Wow...quite a review, shinygoodguy; I hold no hope this film will ever appear at a theater anywhere near me (vey rural) but I will watch for it based on your review!
Thanks

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Saturday, December 9, 2017 1:40 PM

BRENDA


I've heard of it. David Hewlett is involved as well. If you mentioned him, sorry I just skimmed your review. I hope I can see it.

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Saturday, December 9, 2017 6:50 PM

THGRRI


Not my cup to tea, you know mushy, but it's supposed to be good.



T

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Saturday, December 9, 2017 7:40 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


3 winners for Octavia Spencer this year?
Hidden Figures.
Gifted.
The Shape of Water.
I already recommend the first 2.

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Saturday, December 9, 2017 10:14 PM

BRENDA


Quote:

Originally posted by THGRRI:
Not my cup to tea, you know mushy, but it's supposed to be good.



T



I'm not on mushy either but my curiosity has been known to get the better of me.

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Saturday, December 9, 2017 11:12 PM

SHINYGOODGUY


I'm guessing, from your response here in Cinema, that you're a movie buff and/or an avid film goer. If so, I think you'll love this movie. It kind of harkens back to those wonderful films of the 70s, but, in a way, the films of the 40s and 50s. Solid acting, good story and wonderful music. It is a lovely film. And thank you.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Sister:
Wow...quite a review, shinygoodguy; I hold no hope this film will ever appear at a theater anywhere near me (vey rural) but I will watch for it based on your review!
Thanks


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Saturday, December 9, 2017 11:17 PM

SHINYGOODGUY


Yes, David Hewlett is in it. The cast, all wonderful by the way, was just too numerous to include in the review, but yes, it is a tribute to Del Toro just how truly wonderful the cast is in this film. Plus, not a single frame is wasted. Very well edited as well. Surprisingly funny too.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Brenda:
I've heard of it. David Hewlett is involved as well. If you mentioned him, sorry I just skimmed your review. I hope I can see it.


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Saturday, December 9, 2017 11:26 PM

SHINYGOODGUY


Well, I would say if it were mushy...but I get it, some folks like a good western, action or sci-fi. This film is more of a fable, fantasy with a side trip to romance.
Think HellBoy but with superb acting performances. Del Toro delivered a robust fairy tale and I got the feeling it was a modern-day impressionistic painting, but set in a 60s style.

And yes, it is that good.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by THGRRI:
Not my cup to tea, you know mushy, but it's supposed to be good.



T


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Saturday, December 9, 2017 11:29 PM

SHINYGOODGUY


Yes, she's been picking some good roles ever since The Help.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by JEWELSTAITEFAN:
3 winners for Octavia Spencer this year?
Hidden Figures.
Gifted.
The Shape of Water.
I already recommend the first 2.


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Saturday, December 9, 2017 11:59 PM

BRENDA


Quote:

Originally posted by SHINYGOODGUY:
Yes, David Hewlett is in it. The cast, all wonderful by the way, was just too numerous to include in the review, but yes, it is a tribute to Del Toro just how truly wonderful the cast is in this film. Plus, not a single frame is wasted. Very well edited as well. Surprisingly funny too.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Brenda:
I've heard of it. David Hewlett is involved as well. If you mentioned him, sorry I just skimmed your review. I hope I can see it.




No worries. I follow David on Twitter and he was talking about it. As I said I hope I can see it somehow even if I have to wait until some posts it on YouTube. That was how I saw his last project which was called "Debug" and Jason Momoa was in that. I didn't care for that one but a lot of David's films are an acquired taste, I've found.

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Sunday, December 10, 2017 6:48 AM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by SHINYGOODGUY:
Yes, she's been picking some good roles ever since The Help.

SGG

Quote:

Originally posted by JEWELSTAITEFAN:
3 winners for Octavia Spencer this year?
Hidden Figures.
Gifted.
The Shape of Water.
I already recommend the first 2.


I'm not sure. I enjoyed her in A Time To Kill, Dollhouse, ER. But her role selection seems to maintain an eclectic arc. I do expect she has better choices now, tho.

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Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:03 PM

SHINYGOODGUY


My guess is that he's a character actor, David Hewlett. I haven't heard of him until now, but he was good in TSoW.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Brenda:
Quote:

Originally posted by SHINYGOODGUY:
Yes, David Hewlett is in it. The cast, all wonderful by the way, was just too numerous to include in the review, but yes, it is a tribute to Del Toro just how truly wonderful the cast is in this film. Plus, not a single frame is wasted. Very well edited as well. Surprisingly funny too.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Brenda:
I've heard of it. David Hewlett is involved as well. If you mentioned him, sorry I just skimmed your review. I hope I can see it.




No worries. I follow David on Twitter and he was talking about it. As I said I hope I can see it somehow even if I have to wait until some posts it on YouTube. That was how I saw his last project which was called "Debug" and Jason Momoa was in that. I didn't care for that one but a lot of David's films are an acquired taste, I've found.


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Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:08 PM

SHINYGOODGUY


Maybe I said that wrong. I'm not saying that she wasn't good throughout her career, I'm just saying that her role choices have gotten better since her Oscar win for The Help. Of course, she's been good, the Academy just caught up.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by JEWELSTAITEFAN:
Quote:

Originally posted by SHINYGOODGUY:
Yes, she's been picking some good roles ever since The Help.

SGG

Quote:

Originally posted by JEWELSTAITEFAN:
3 winners for Octavia Spencer this year?
Hidden Figures.
Gifted.
The Shape of Water.
I already recommend the first 2.


I'm not sure. I enjoyed her in A Time To Kill, Dollhouse, ER. But her role selection seems to maintain an eclectic arc. I do expect she has better choices now, tho.


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Sunday, December 10, 2017 8:29 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by SHINYGOODGUY:
My guess is that he's a character actor, David Hewlett. I haven't heard of him until now, but he was good in TSoW.


SGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Brenda:
Quote:

Originally posted by SHINYGOODGUY:
Yes, David Hewlett is in it. The cast, all wonderful by the way, was just too numerous to include in the review, but yes, it is a tribute to Del Toro just how truly wonderful the cast is in this film. Plus, not a single frame is wasted. Very well edited as well. Surprisingly funny too.

SGG

Quote:

Originally posted by Brenda:
I've heard of it. David Hewlett is involved as well. If you mentioned him, sorry I just skimmed your review. I hope I can see it.



No worries. I follow David on Twitter and he was talking about it. As I said I hope I can see it somehow even if I have to wait until some posts it on YouTube. That was how I saw his last project which was called "Debug" and Jason Momoa was in that. I didn't care for that one but a lot of David's films are an acquired taste, I've found.


David was on Stargate: Atlantis, with Jewel Staite. And also Jason Momoa.

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