Building slowly from a stately start, Del Toro manages to unite all his disparate elements - ghosts and gold, infidelity and politics - for a devastating final reel. The command of sound and colour is breathtaking.
Del Toro's brilliantly combined a humanist ghost story with ornament of history of wartime and politic allegory, makes "The Devil's Backbone" not only creepy and haunting, but also elegant, beautiful, and dramatic, This film is deserved become one of the best modern horror film ever made.
¿Qué es un fantasma? Una historia de fantasmas narrada de un modo innovador, en un ambiente marcado por la guerra, en el que los personajes viven agobiados por carencias de todo tipo. Una de las trazarían el camino para El laberinto del fauno.
A fascinating examination of youth during wartime, specifically a group of orphans during the final days of the Spanish Civil War. In classic Guillermo del Toro fashion, the movie is somewhat of a fairy tale, masquerading as a ghost story to dive deeper into the movie's rich themes. Gorgeously shot and wonderfully performed, The Devil's Backbone is a devastatingly beautiful film.
Spain 1939: the Second World War shakes Europe but there is still a civil war in the country. Carlos, a young orphan, enters a sinister and atypical reformatory, directed by the sweet Carmen, by Doctor Casares (secretly in love with her) and by Jacinto, enigmatic and charming caretaker. Carlos immediately enters the sights of Jaime, a violent and evil companion, who never misses an opportunity to make his life hell. To further complicate matters are the apparitions of Santi, a pupil who mysteriously disappeared years earlier.
A really well executed child horror that I also prefer to Pan's Lambyrinth.
Guillermo del Toro is right when it came to Hollywood's portrayal of kids in movies with "children as happy, brainless creatures that spout one-liners." The same goes to the tired praise of "the accurate portrayal" of kids who swear and make crude banter, because "omg that's what kids totally do and say". However, what I feel is missing from a lot of these movies is just how vulnerable and how unsafe it is to be a child. Where the chances of experiencing trauma and being ignored lies in certainty.
And I think del Toro captured that effectively.