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THE SHAPE OF WATER Trailer Offers More Horrific Whimsy from Guillermo del Toro

THE SHAPE OF WATER Trailer Offers More Horrific Whimsy from Guillermo del Toro

When Guillermo del Toro’s last movie, Crimson Peak, hit theaters in the fall of 2015, it seemed like each and every filmgoer was spouting the same review: “Not what I was expecting.” Quickly enough, word spread that the film was not quite the ostentatious horror flick that the trailers had promised, but instead more of a macabre and supernaturally inclined Gothic romance. While this disparity is what ultimately sunk the good name of Crimson Peak among the masses, longtime del Toro devotees were better prepared for what the movie really had to offer. Misleading marketing aside, Crimson Peak was GDT through and through, which we can likewise say for this first glimpse of the director’s next outing: The Shape of Water. This time around, the trailers aren’t hiding del Toro-ness of it all. Not one bit.

This first look at the new fantasy drama embraces everything on which del Toro has built his creative reputation. Sally Hawkins stars as Elisa, a mute janitorial worker whose heart of gold seems to elevate her above the stature of base mortality. The kooky characters that surround her range from a fed-up compatriot (Octavia Spencer), a wizened academic (Richard Jenkins), an up-in-arms scientist (Michael Stuhlbarg), and the nefarious man in power (Michael Shannon), all buzzing about the sort of dank yet beautiful underground laboratory that should ring familiar to del Toro fans.

And to make matters as del Toro-y as del Toro-ly possible: there’s an anthropomorphic fish monster with whom Elisa becomes the best of friends. Their unlikely rapport, and her inevitable efforts to rescue her aquatic chum from the grip of Shannon’s character, are set up in this trailer as the premise for the movie, thus cementing The Shape of Water as another in del Toro’s long line of stories about misunderstood monsters searching for where (and with whom) they belong.

All in all, it doesn’t look like we’ll be dealing with another Crimson Peak problem. The Shape of Water wears its del Toro on its sleeve, and that’s for the best.

Image: Fox Searchlight

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