Guillermo del Toro is known as a master of fairy tale-like imagery and making what may seem grotesque beautiful to the audience he's captivating. Monsters, faeries, demons and ghosts have all passed through his able hands and mind, and it looks like he has another winner on his hands with his latest film, The Shape of Water. After a week in theaters exclusively, we finally have our first look at the trailer to this project, which you can watch below.
The Shape of Water tells the story of Eliza, played by Sally Hawkins. A mute employee of a government research facility, she falls in love with a sea creature that bears a striking resemblance to the Creature from the Black Lagoon. But instead of being a force of terror, this creature is portrayed as a captive to this facility, which looks to be run by the curious, but not so sympathetic, character played by Michael Shannon. As Eliza gets closer to the creature, it appears she'll do anything to save him.
You can never say that Guillermo del Toro's films are boring, especially in the visual perspective. The Shape of Water has the gorgeous clarity of the modern image, while at the same time being staged much like the classic films of the Cold War era the film takes place in. Of course, these images accompany a well-worn, but always welcome, theme that del Toro has explored in his works time and time again. That theme is the kindness of one species to another, against those that would see both factions separate.
Of course, this is merely a teaser, and as such we see some brief flashes of the events to come in The Shape of Water. The film already has an R rating, and we see some of that on the screen, as torture, blood and relations between Eliza and Doug Jones' unnamed sea creature are all implied in quick cuts. Rounding out the film's cast are Academy Award winner, and Guillermo del Toro fan, Octavia Spencer, Golden Globe nominee Michael Stuhlbarg, and Academy Award nominee Richard Jenkins. So if the visuals don't have you intrigued, that cast surely will.
We don't get many films like The Shape of Water these days, and it's a shame. If this movie lives up to the potential and pedigree it possesses, it'll not only be one of Guillermo del Toro's best films, it'll be a sure contender for awards glory. Both prospects make passing up directing duties in Pacific Rim: Uprising all the more rewarding, as well as making now a good time to state that The Shape of Water will be in limited theaters on December 8, with a wide release to follow. If you're interested in seeing this trailer nice and large, it's attached to some prints of War for the Planet of the Apes as we speak.