El Laberinto del fauno is known to many as Pan’s Labyrinth but the director and writer Guillermo del Toro found Pan inappropriate in a film opposite what was supposed to be an eight-year-old girl. He preferred the English title “The Labyrinth of the Faun.” He personally translated all of the Spanish dialogue into English subtitles to retain control.
del Toro uses extreme violence to paint a picture of the brutality during the Spanish Civil War and then sets a young girl with a powerful imagination against that backdrop. An intensely beautiful film, both in the incredible visuals (real and CG) and in the wonderfully melodic sound of the Spanish language.
The acting is amazing especially that of Ivana Baquero (as the girl Ofelia), Sergi López (Capitán Vidal, Ofelia’s psychotic stepfather), Maribel Verdú (the resourceful Mercedes), Ariadna Gil (Ofelia’s mother) and Álex Angulo (the courageous Dr. Ferreiro). Doug Jones played the role of the Faun and the terrifying pale man with an unreal zeal.
Highly recommended but not for kids!
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