Pan's Labyrinth...

...rocked! Seriously, I knew very little about this movie going into it. I knew it was directed by Guillermo Del Toro. I knew it had fantasy elements in it. I knew it was a darker kind of fantasy, along the lines of the Grimm's Fairytales of old.

I did not know, however, that it was set in WWII era Spain, or that it was Spanish-language with English subtitles (of which I am very glad!). Nor did I realize that the fantasy elements were going to be balanced so deftly with a straightforward tale of conflict, deceit, suspense, love and tragedy.

The cinematography was beautiful. The acting was top-notch, the violent elments were staged very realistically, and the CGI work was simultaneously compelling, realistic, fantastic, creepy and beautiful.

Go see this movie if it's still playing at a theater near you. If not, rent it when it comes out on DVD (release date is TBD).

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