Film Theory

“The Shape of Water” Eats Fish Sticks

By August 9, 2018 No Comments
Shape of Water Creature

What the royal fuck is wrong with Guillermo del Toro? How does he keep making films that are getting progressively worse? Is he the next M. Night Shyamalan? Despite having seen this a while ago, I’ve had a hard time writing about this film because it has nothing to point to; it’s complete fucking garbage and Guillermo should be ashamed.

I get the sense that he finally got around to watching City of Lost Children or Delicatessen and thought, “Damn, I would LOVE to make a movie like that…” and then tried it, failing miserably. If you don’t see similarities between the protagonist of this movie and Amélie, you’re not looking hard enough.

The art direction is the only thing decent about this movie (although not nearly at the level of Marc Caro), but inconsistently so: they focus on every little detail, except the ones that are glaringly inaccurate. (There’s a scene where they flood the bathroom simply by sticking a towel at the base of the door. It’s so fucking dumb that I felt my IQ dip down 5 points.)

Shape of Water Art DirectionEverything about the story and its execution is cliché. They even have the stereotypical black woman with her fountain of wisdom and pithy advice spraying all over the fucking place – an ejaculation of race-ignorant tropes that should never have made it into a film in 2017. I’m taking full “Mmmm-HMMMMMMMMMM, guuuuuurl” one-liners and all. …Yeah, I couldn’t believe this shit either. And yet, the film actually takes TIME to show people being discriminatory toward black people…why? What’s the fucking point? Is the message, “Hey, racism is bad, guys. You should never tell black people seating isn’t available in a pie restaurant that’s empty…oh, and homophobia.” You think I’m joking with this or exaggerating the juxtaposition of themes? I’d tell you to watch the film and see proof, but this fucking steaming pile of malignant cancer is not worth your time.

Stereotypical CharactersAnd I really shouldn’t have to say this again, but I am so fucking sick and tired of voiceovers in the beginning and end of films. It’s the laziest, dumbest, most hack thing to do and it’s a ready sign that the “artist” is too talentless to find a more appropriate solution to setting up their story. They lean so heavily on it, and obviously so; and how strange that they work to set up context where we don’t need it. Am I just going to watch this film thinking, “Meh, this person isn’t that special…I don’t know why we’re following her around,” only to have the VO kick in and everything make sense? “OH! So she IS special and the main character of this picture! Holy shit…I had…I HAD NO FUCKING IDEA!” Morons. Utter fucking trash whose creative ability is lower than grass.

Don’t waste your time on this picture. It’s aimless, meandering fucking waste that flounders around with a weak plot and bullshit politicising in ways that are ineffectual and pandering. I’m furious that it’s a film, I’m furious that it was made with the good intentions of people’s money and the creative talents of the crew, and I’m furious that this bloated fucking balloon of washed up old gristle is still making pictures with zero merit. Go home, Guillermo. Don’t become Shyamalan…bow out gracefully and do us all a favour, you rancorous pile of dog shit.