Guillermo Del Toro Has Received A Huge Honor

By Britta DeVore | Published

guillermo del toro

When one thinks of modern cinema, it’s difficult to imagine someone more innovative and full of imagination than The Shape of Water’s Guillermo del Toro. While some of his productions may not land with all audiences, the maestro of monsters has had hit after hit, landing him with a slew of accolades including a few Academy Awards along the way. And, as per Variety, the director was celebrated all over again late last week at MoMA’s annual Film Benefit.

The evening was especially momentous for Guillermo del Toro who was celebrating the release of his latest feature, Pinocchio. While we imagine there are somewhere close to 1 million retellings of the classic Carlo Collodi novel out there in existence, del Toro found a new and, of course, inventive way to share his take. For one thing, it’s stop-motion animation, something that took much more time than your average flick.

Over 1,000 hours of shooting were needed to complete Guillermo del Toro’s latest artistic vision, a feat that we can’t even begin to wrap our heads around. Released to Netflix this weekend after a limited theatrical engagement, Pinocchio adds another major title to the streamer’s stop-motion collection. In late October, The Nightmare Before Christmas director Henry Selick made his big return to the film industry with the Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key-voiced Wendell & Wild, another impressive feature if you haven’t checked it out yet. 


So, what sets Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio apart from versions that have come before it including Disney’s wild live-action/animated hybrid that landed on Disney+ in September? While both may be a tad terrifying, del Toro’s promises to be scary in the way that touches on political upheaval and family dynamics mixed with tragedy. Through the director’s award-winning Pan’s Labyrinth, audiences tuned into the devastating story of characters torn apart by Francisco Franco’s dictatorship in 1940s Spain, while in Pinocchio, del Toro focuses on fascist Italy.

While the characters sing and dance their regular tunes, a bleak backdrop is set as the events carry out during an authoritarian takeover of the country. Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio also begins in a different way than other versions of the wooden boy who comes to life. While many stories pick up with the lonely wood crafter, Geppetto, grieving the loss of his son and wishing that he’ll return to life, del Toro actually shows it.

In his film, Guillermo del Toro sheds light on what Geppetto’s relationship with his beloved son Carlo was like before he passed. With this new twist, audiences are given a better chance to understand the immense loss that Geppetto feels after losing his child. While del Toro may be a wiz at crafting stories surrounding monsters, he’s even better at creating metaphors between things that go bump in the night and mankind as a whole.

From its early reviews, Guillermo del Toro’s latest feature really hit the nail on the head. The voice cast alone is incredible and boasts the likes of Cate Blanchett, Ewan McGregor, David Bradley, Gregory Mann, Tilda Swinton, Burn Gorman, Ron Perlman, Finn Wolfhard, and John Turturro, just to name a few. Now streaming on Netflix, it’s a great time to settle in with some popcorn and bask in the MoMA honoree’s latest feature.