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If there's anything Guillermo del Toro's movies have taught the world, it's that monsters are people, too. And much like the creatures of his films, del Toro has taken what's normally considered genre filmmaking and turned it into a brilliant, lush playground for his imagination to truly run wild. But out of all of his children, which ones does he value the most? Well, according to a recent Q&A, the man himself ranked his six best films as follows:
I like 1)The Shape of Water, 2) The Devil's Backbone 3) Pan's Labyrinth, 4) Crimson Peak, 5) Hellboy II 6) Pacific Rim the most.
This was in response to a specific criteria though, as the Reddit commenter who asked Guillermo del Toro about his ranking of his films based on how close they came to his vision, as well as how passionate he was about the film's creative process. Out of the 10 films that he's directed, those six films were selected and ranked accordingly. While each film is a winner in its own right, as well as in the eyes of their creator, Pacific Rim was apparently the most fun and most artistically aligned to what del Toro intended for audiences to see.
Looking at that list of films as a movie fan, it's hard to rank those films on face value. But looking at some of the pitfalls and stories behind some of those films, you can see where they may have fallen behind. Take Pan's Labyrinth, for instance. While the film did go on to make a big splash for Guillermo del Toro's career, it was almost sabotaged by the fact that several possible studios were willing to offer more financing if the film was made in English, and with bigger stars. Even The Shape of Water ran into some studio-suggested changes, as his original black-and-white vision was swapped for the more colorful approach that the film currently inhabits.
But sitting right at the top of the list, in all of its towering glory, is Pacific Rim;__a movie that suffered its own problems, but more on the box office receipt end. And yet, that film was so much of a product of unbridled faith and limitless imagination that Guillermo del Toro feels like it's the best film he's put out there. Though there are no losers in this line-up, as del Toro clearly loves all of his children, there are clearly some films that were easier and more satisfying to make than others. It happens when you're a director known to push the boundaries of the monster realm, exploring the places few others venture out to.
The Shape of Water is in limited release now, and it will expand to more theaters this Friday, December 8.