Thank you to Sam for recommending this movie! I know you could’ve chosen LOTR but I appreciate the restraint 🙂
Quick recap: A young girl growing up during the Francoist Period in Spain enters a fantasy world to escape her frightening real life situation.
Fun (?) fact: In literally every other country except America,this movie is known as ‘The Labyrinth of the Faun’, which makes way more sense.
My thoughts: Boy, was this a dark movie. I remember the depressing ending from when I watched it a few years ago but I was still a little taken aback by its bleakness. Then again, this is directed by Guillermo del Toro so no one should go into this expecting rainbows and sunshine. Or go ahead and believe that. I’m not here to tell you how to live your life.
It’s hard to describe why I loved Pan’s Labyrinth so much because I lack all those fancy words that real film reviewers use, but I’ll try my best. To me, the world that del Toro created in the movie felt real. It went beyond creating a creepy set and cast of characters and it moved into something that truly had life. At first I was like, ‘Can’t Ofelia at least catch a break in her OWN MADE UP WORLD?’ but the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. This girl has seen stuff and like many kids, uses her imagination to try and make her situation better. But even then, you can’t ever really escape and so her fantasy world is completely intertwined with her real world. Which makes this movie ten times more depressing, honestly.
While looking up trivia for the film I came across several theories about the meaning or theme of the movie. Of course there is the religious element, which I usually shoot down because people think they see Jesus everywhere (mostly in toast). And there is the theme of good vs. evil, which a) seems too simple for a movie like this and b) once again, this theme is in everything. I didn’t bother to read too much into what I watched and instead just enjoyed the story. I trust that del Toro put in a bunch of symbols but I like that Pan’s Labyrinth can also be taken at face value as a (very depressing) fairy tale.
Also- war is hell, man.
Final review: 5/5
Up next: There’s Something About Mary