Previews

The Shape Of Water Gets A Trailer

Guillermo del Toro’s latest film, The Shape Of Water released its first trailer. The trailer played in theaters before War for the Planet of the Apes and was released online at a later date.

The Notorious GDT

Guillermo del Toro’s brain is a full-blown encyclopedia. He talks about horror and science-fiction like a fine wine connoisseur. And his collection of movie props is jaw-dropping. Seriously, the guy has a second house dedicated strictly to his memorabilia. His passion and knowledge of the medium ooze off the screen. In short, Guillermo del Toro commands respect.

Also, he’s not my cup of tea. I’ve seen a handful of his films and found only one to be truly great. However, every time I hear him talk about film I get excited. His knowledge of film is astonishing. Unfortunately, it’s his biggest undoing. He is so good at connecting the dots in his brain, that I find his final products undercooked. I say all this in the spirit of full disclosure. I never actively hope for his films to fail, but I also know that I’m probably not going to enjoy them. 

Such is the case with The Shape of Water. The film is a product of his failed attempt at a remake of Creature from the Black Lagoon. It’s been a passion project of his since before Pacific Rim and he chose to direct this over Pacific Rim: Uprising. The trailer hit the internet earlier today, so let’s take a look.

What Is The Shape of Water?

Okay, on my first viewing of the trailer I wasn’t too impressed. But then I re-watched it after its online debut. I’m cautiously optimistic about the piece and think there are some interesting ideas at play. Once again, I’m not sure the concept in Guillermo’s head is fully conveyed to the audience. However, this is merely a teaser trailer. Besides, there’s a scene that looks like a love letter to 1960’s cinema, and that goes a long way with me.

Honestly, it plays like Bioshock meets Fallout. The 1950’s bomb shelter aesthetic combined with the underwater and Art Deco fonts draw you in. Furthermore, Sally Hawkins is a great actress and her performance will make or break the film. Of course, Doug Jones is playing the creature. And he puts in rock solid work no matter what. 

On the other hand, there’s a twee sensibility about the trailer that feels out of place. Many scenes look lifted right out of Amelie. The kinetic editing and use of color also feel at home in a Wes Anderson film. Guillermo likes bending genres, but it’s always a gamble.

I’m sure many of you are excited for The Shape of Water. And that’s great! It’s kind of amazing that Guillermo del Toro can find funding for films at all. His films are usually effects heavy and require a lot of technical work. But they never fully return their investment. So, as long as Guillermo del Toro wants to make movies, let him. I don’t have to like every movie. And, if he ever runs out of funding, I’ll be first in line to hear him speak about film history.

What did you think about the trailer for The Shape of Water? Let us know in the comments!


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About the author

MJ Smith

MJ Smith makes his home in California, and when not listening to Hamilton, podcasts and writes about pop culture on the internet. He loves board games, Swamp Thing, and The Wachowski's SPEED RACER.

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