What Got This Director Here?: Pan’s Labyrinth, mostly.
My Favorite Past Experience Was…: Pan’s Labyrinth, which I need to rewatch but I sort of loved for being so basic even if it’s very much a foreign film for Americans.
What Did I Watch: Devil’s Backbone.
Where Does He Fit: Guillermo del Toro’s films are the worst ones that I regularly look forward to. He’s a terribly unsubtle story teller with deeply derivative visual sense, but those two things have somehow collided in the healthiest way possible, making grand popcorny homages with very loud, pleasingly simple metaphors. Even the acting feels like something out of a soap opera, to be frank, but it works since everything is so stylized. Unlike Pan’s Labyrinth, where everything is clear and obvious and in its place, Devil’s Backbone is a weird haze of moments and frames that may not connect perfectly but certainly left an impact. Messy, but worthwhile stuff.
Most Valuable Asset: Heightened influences.
Most Excited For: Crimson Peak.
Did They Deserve a Spot?: Undecided.
Coming Up Next: Batshit Frenchman Olivier Assayas.