Shape of Water: Film Review

By Amber Brooks

The newest film, by the genius human-teddy bear of a director Guillermo Del Toro, will have you marvelling and awwwwwhing at magical fairy-tale to define the year.
Like his previous epic movies such as 'Crimson Peaks' and the spectacular 'Pans Labyrinth', the Shape of Water submerges the audience into a mysterious and intriguing setting, combined with beautiful aesthetics. This, combined with Soviet spies and that all important La La Land moment, is sure to make any avid old-Hollywood addicts giddy with glee. It is with this odd mish-mash of styles that Toro has created something entirely different from any other film out there, and that is why its completely awesome; it's not surprising that Toro was nominated for twelve academy awards, four of which he won,
including best picture.

And yes, before you ask, this is the film about a woman and a humanoid fish creature falling in love. To an outsider, this probably seems rather awkward and cringy but rest assured, it is nothing like that. When watching the film, you can clearly understand that the connection between the lovers is rather endearing. They are both outsiders; Sally Hawkins' female protagonist character, Eliza, is mute and therefore struggles to fit in and the fish man... well... he is a fish, so therefore there is no one else quite like him. Eliza strives to save him from vivisection, resulting in a classic Del Toro shot in the face moment.

Although a little bit of a slow start, the second half of the film is close to perfect. It can be a little unsettling seeing this humanoid fish creature, but soon you will quickly adjust. It's remarkable the amount of prosthetics and little special effects that goes into Doug Jones'; costume. Within today's culture of creating massive special effects movies this is a well needed palette cleanser especially if its a plate of green jelly.