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Sunday, 13 October 2013

El Laberinto Del Fauno Aka The Labyrinth of The Faun Aka Pan's Labyrinth

What happens when the director of Hellboy and Blade 2 does his own original thing?  He entertains and scares the crap out of more people.  Pan's Labrynth was very influential by combining the horrors of war, with the dark whimsy of fairy tales and in the end gave us more questions about the movie, but in a good way. It also gained its fame, as being one of the first few trailers in the world to fool us into thinking we were seeing a kid's movie.  Ya.....we were idiots to think an adult themed director would do something like that. -insert Martin Scorsese Hugo Joke Here-.  I first saw this movie in film class, it was one of the few foreign language movies I could ever watch from beginning to end.  I am not culturally insensitive or anything, I just like dubbed movies better in that department.  But ya one of the few I seen beginning to end.  Needless to say I liked it. Since I like this movie I do warn spoilers and like NIMH forbid you to read further until you do. If you don't the Pale Man will get you.

The story begins in 1944 WWII was a year away from closing, but Spain had it's own civil war problem. Ofelia, a fairy tale obsessed girl, along with her mother and soon to be born baby brother are to meet her stepfather, Captain Vidal.  Or as I like to call him Spanish Bizarro Hitler.  Why?  I'll tell you later.  Anywho during their stay at the compound, Vidal has his own problems. As the rebels are stealing supplies from his compound and he suspects inside jobs.  During a routine interrogation, you will see why I call him Spanish Bizarro Hitler.  He brutally murders two innocent hunters who were accused of being members of the rebels. Ofelia during her stay is visited by a fairy who leads her into an ancient labyrinth, where she meets a faun who claims she is really Moanna, a princess who came from the underworld out of curiosity of the surface world.  However in order to go back to the underworld, she must pass three tests before the next full moon. The first test being that she make a giant toad throw up a key.  (I'm surprised said toad didn't try to eat her, but I guess her princess...ness.  Shields her from harm.)  The second to use said Key and a chalk that turns any surface drawn on with it into doors, to find the lair of the Pale Man: an evil Child Eating beast who guards a door to a dagger. While all this is going on her mother's condition is worsening, two rebel spies (one of which is a close friend to Ofelia) are close to being found out and Vidal is going insane.  All of the subplots come crashing together as Ofelia prepares for the final test.

Now for the fun part.  Could It Exist In Real Life?

First let's start with the Labyrinth. While this particular one does not exist. There are real Labyrinths all over the world.  Some of which have decayed, to the point where they are easily navigated.

Second are the creatures, the fairies as I stated before are elementals. However something about them as well as the overall world has me think of a theory I won't say until the conclusion. The Faun also exists in myth.  Most famously in greek myths is the God Pan which the English title derives itself of.  Pan himself was of all thing referred to as a friend to the Nymphs another name fairies have gone by.  Is it no coincidence that the fairies are this Faun's companions throughout the movie?  Lastly there is the Pale Man.  He does exist in a way. But he is not based on any ancient myth or legend.  Oh no, he is much much worse.  The Pale Man is based on an ongoing legend passed down from parent to child since the beginning of storytelling.  He is....the Bogey man and how was he able to get from place to place?  Why Ofelia gave him the way through that chalk I mentioned.  The one that turns every surface drawn on it into a door.  Nice job breaking it Heroine. Last but not least is the Mandrake, which Ofelia used to keep her mother alive.  It does exist.  Infact it's been used a lot in wicca and other occult organizations. 

Third is the interpretation of the story.  What I said aside. Guillermo Del Toro made it very ambiguous to whether or not the fantasy scenes were real, or Ofelia's imagination running wild to cope with her living situation.  Even Del Toro decided to fuck with our minds by saying that he believed the fairies were real.  However I take the third option that it's both.  For you see, the world and it's creatures are called Tulpa's.  A Tulpa is a manifestation, created by the mind and the senses using intense concentration.  However once created unless, others have helped, only the creator of said Tulpa/s can see it.   There was a particular scene that proved such.  In the beginning of the movie, Ofelia spotted a stick insect which she thought was a fairy.  Said stick insect visited her in her mothers bed later that night and she showed it a pictorial representation of what a fairy looked like to her.  The insect then changed into said representation.  Later on in the climax of the film she was arguing with the Faun on whether or not her brother should be sacrificed in order to get her home into the underworld.  Moments before Vidal killed her, he could only see her and the baby she was holding, but not the Faun she was talking to. Lastly, after she died she was welcomed into the underworld, as she imagined it with her mother and father as they looked like in the real world welcoming her to sit with them on the throne.

Now for my final thought. By now you are probably wondering why I called Vidal "Spanish Bizarro Hitler"? That's because he is just as ruthless as Hitler, however unlike Hitler he does his own dirty work, he tortures prisoners with his own set of tools and during the war scenes has fought along side his men when he could have stayed behind.  As for the overall movie itself. It's a good watch and I recommend it to everyone.

As usual, debate, argue and let me know what I missed.  Stay Tuned For More.

Also added bonus to Stephen King. Why? Because if Del Toro can make a movie that could make King squirm, he can scare anyone.

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