I have watched Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio twice. The first time was in digital projection and the second time was in 35mm projection. Both editions were mesmerizing. As the wonderful world seen through the eyes of Toro grasped my attention, I felt like a young kid again. I love and feel connected to the characters of Pinocchio and Geppetto. There are so many amazing voices in this atmospheric adventure including Pinocchio (voiced by Gregory Mann), Geppetto (voiced by David Bradley), Sebastian J. Cricket (voiced by Ewan McGregor), Spazzatura (voiced by Cate Blanchett), Candlewick (voiced by Finn Wolfhard), Count Volpe (voiced by Christoph Waltz), and Dottore (voiced by John Turturro). Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio is a world of wonder and joy with an imaginative storyline. Toro knows how to connect his audience to the love Pinocchio wants in the film. It is simply a grandeur of cinema creativity and magic.
The story begins with a woodcarver, Geppetto who has recently lost his son. Filled with grief and despair, he puts his woodcarving skills to work to create a boy figure. Suddenly, that boy comes to life and calls himself Pinocchio who is full of energy and spreads love all around. At first Geppetto struggles to accept that Pinocchio has come into his life. Over time, however, Geppetto starts to feel like a father again. Pinocchio has some difficulties because he struggles to understand right from wrong in the world. He also finds it difficult to understand he is much different than the people around him. Despite all the differences Pinnochio is eager to feel like a real human being. His encounters with good influences including Sebastian J. Cricket, Candlewick, and of course Geppetto are the ones that care about Pinocchio the most. Sadly, Pinocchio does not understand who truly cares about him which causes him to run away with the evil Count Volpe in hopes of finding attention. With Geppetto still suffering from depression from the loss of his son, he sets out on a journey to get Pinocchio back.
Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinnochio is an adventure of love, peril, and deceit. In between the happy and sad moments, there are many wonderful musical moments that are just extremely heartwarming. Toro’s direction is incredible in the way it makes the audience sense the love around Pinocchio. Of course, as people know from the famous story, Pinocchio’s biggest issue is that when he lies his nose grows. Pinocchio’s nose is at the center of him learning to make the right choices during this joyful ride of magical animations.
The adventures which are filled with confusion, frustration, and sadness for Pinocchio and Geppetto are spellbinding. I was captivated with the disconnect the film displays in many loving ways. Toro knows connection and imagination. He creates a picture where love is enticing for everyone in the film. He even portrays admirable moments during the perilous scenes. Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio has many moments which deliver silver linings, but the best ones are between Geppetto and Pinocchio which is why I adore Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio. It is about connection, love, discovery, and acceptance portrayed in many endearing scenes.
The second time I saw Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio, I attended the 35mm format at Music Box Theatre. The best part about this experience was that the director attended virtually along with the audience. Hearing Del Toro talk about his imagination and the process of making the film was captivating and surreal. Del Toro is not afraid to throw his creativity into full swing. He is also not afraid to do what it takes to make his audience feel a sense of connection to his projects. Both of his strengths are in full display and spot-on in Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio. Come experience the love with Geppetto, Pinocchio, and many other wonderful characters in this not to miss movie. Four stars.