Trilogía de Guillermo del Toro (Cronos / The Devil's Backbone / Pan's Labyrinth) (The Criterion Collection)
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Throughout a career that encompasses both visually arresting art-house hits and big-budget Hollywood spectacles, director Guillermo del Toro has continually redefined and elevated the horror genre with his deeply personal explorations of myths and monsters. These three Spanish-language films, each a tale of childhood in troubled times, showcase his singular fusion of the fantastic and the real. Drawing inspiration from a rich variety of sources, from Alfred Hitchcock to Francisco de Goya, the gothic-infused stories collected here populated by vampires, ghosts, and a fairy-tale princess make evident why del Toro is considered the master cinematic fabulist of our time.
DIRECTOR-APPROVED THREE-BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION COLLECTOR'S SET FEATURES
- High-definition digital restoration of Cronos, 2K digital restoration of The Devil s Backbone, newly graded 2K digital master of Pan s Labyrinth, all supervised and approved by director Guillermo del Toro, with 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack for Cronos and 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtracks for The Devil s Backbone and Pan s Labyrinth
- Alternate DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 surround soundtrack for Pan s Labyrinth
- Audio commentaries on all three films
- Interviews with del Toro, director of photography Guillermo Navarro, and actors Doug Jones, Federico Luppi, and Ron Perlman
- Welcome to Bleak House, a 2010 video tour by del Toro of his personal collections
- New piece on Pan s Labyrinth featuring del Toro and novelist Cornelia Funke
- Interactive director s notebooks for The Devil s Backbone and Pan s Labyrinth
- Making-of documentaries for The Devil s Backbone and Pan s Labyrinth
- Geometria, a 1987 short horror film by del Toro finished in 2010
- Footage of actor Ivana Baquero auditioning for Pan s Labyrinth in 2005
- Original Spanish-language voice-over introduction for Cronos
- Introductions by del Toro for The Devil s Backbone and Pan s Labyrinth
- Deleted scenes from The Devil s Backbone, with commentary by del Toro
- Selected on-screen picture-in-picture presentation of del Toro s thumbnail sketches for The Devil s Backbone
- Programs comparing del Toro s thumbnail sketches and production storyboards for The Devil s Backbone and Pan s Labyrinth with the final films
- Piece on The Devil s Backbone s depiction of the Spanish Civil War
- Animated comics featuring prequel stories for the creatures of Pan s Labyrinth
- Gallery of stills from Cronos, captioned by del Toro
- Trailers and TV spots
- English subtitle translations approved by del Toro
- Deluxe box set featuring new illustrations by Vania Zouravliov
- PLUS: A 100-page hardcover book featuring an introduction by author Neil Gaiman and essays by critics Michael Atkinson, Mark Kermode, and Maitland McDonagh, along with production notes and sketches by del Toro and illustrators Carlos Giménez and Raúl Monge
Top customer reviews
The box is the hidden beauty of this set. The top comes off and it opens to 4 sections that come off each side. The discs are in sleeves, but since they are blu, you don't have to worry too much about scratching. Under the sleeves is a hardcover book. This book is heavy and thick. It starts off with the cast and crew for each film and then goes into a fantastic forward by Neil Gaiman. Then it is filled with sketches and essays about the films and Guillermo del Toro.
At first I was a little set back by the price, but after getting this in the mail, I'm now fully supportive. You really do get what you pay for with this deal. It's worth it.
All three films are stunning and upon checking them, look phenomenal. The included special features are extremely informative and give you a lot of insight into the production. And the hardcover book included is a ton of fun and has a lot of great content. The material used in the creation of the box itself is quite sturdy and looks very nice, and the discs come housed in very thick cardstock sleeves that fold out from a central point where the book is contained.
If you're interested in this set, I can completely guarantee you will be satisfied. The asking price might be a bit high, but I think it's well worth it. Included are a few Instagram photos I snapped of the box both closed and completely opened up.
And the "Trilogía de Guillermo del Toro" focuses on the Spanish-language movies that del Toro has produced, two during the Spanish civil war and one in Mexico. While these movies all have that distinct del Toro touch, they are all extremely different in tone -- one is a horror movie about a sort of alchemical vampire, another a ghost story where the ghosts are the least scary things, and the third a sort of modern fairy tale.
"Cronos" follows antique dealer Jesús Gris (Federico Luppi), who finds a mysterious insectile metal object in the bottom of an angel statue. It injects him with a strange fluid that slowly restores his youth and strength -- but he discovers that it's also giving him a craving for blood. Unfortunately, a wealthy but dying businessman is determined to find the device, and he sends out his brutal nephew Angel (Ron Perlman) to find it -- and after Angel kills Jesús, the old man returns as an undead creature determined to get the device back.
"The Devil's Backbone" follows a young orphan named Carlos (Fernando Tielve) at a remote orphanage during the Spanish Civil War. Kindly Dr. Casares (Federico Luppi) sympathizes with the lonely new boy, but Carlos is distracted by unearthly things -- shadows, footprints, falling pitchers, and finally a ghostly boy with blood seeping from his head. As Carlos tries to figure out how the boy died, the the orphanage is suddenly turned into an explosive war zone at the hands of the brutal Jacinto (Eduardo Noriega).
Also during the Spanish Civil War, "Pan's Labyrinth" follows a little girl named Ofelia (Ivana Baquero). When she and her very pregnant mother join her new stepfather, the brutal and murderous Captain Vidal (Sergi López), Ofelia is visited by a fairy and encounters a giant faun who tells her that she is a princess of the netherworld. As the guerillas and the fascists clash, Ofelia faces being trapped outside the netherworld forever... and being offered a terrible choice if she wants to get in.
These three movies have something in common beyond the Spanish language -- they have a gritty realism and robust darkness to their stories that you won't find in some of del Toro's more polished work like "Hellboy" and "Pacific Rim." These movies are full of blood, glass, light and gold, of orphanages crumbling under the weight of war and surrounded by sunburnt grass -- even "Pan's Labyrinth" roots its hauntingly ethereal visuals in a bloody, brutal war.
Del Toro's magnificent touch adds a haunting beauty to each movie, even in the midst of the darker human element. Sometimes it's subtle (blood floating in the air as if it were in water), and sometimes it's lavish and lush (the cavernous, firelit dining room, with a giant feast laid out, where a grotesque creature with hands in its eyes sleeps). And del Toro adds his own spin on every fantastical element -- vampirism is transmitted through a strange beetle-like device, the ghost is less scary and more a harbinger of doom, and Ofelia's magical world is as terrifying as it is beautiful.
He also got some truly outstanding performances from the actors -- Luppi appears in all three, and he's particularly exceptional as the gentle, cultured Dr. Casares, and the genial antique-dealer who is slowly eaten away by his addictions until he's tempted to kill his own grandchild. Tielve and Baquero also gave magnificent performances as two children adrift in a horrifying war, and Ron Perlman has a smaller but terrifying role as the murderous Angel.
It's worth noting that this trilogy has already been given the full Criterion treatment, with a wealth of extras for each movie, including the short film "Geometria," deleted scenes, documentaries, interviews with the actors and director, audio commentaries, storyboard comparisons, and much, much more. However, it's worth noting that the blu-ray box set does have an extra... well, extra to entice viewers, namely a 100-page book of the assorted essays and production notes/sketches, while the DVD collection has the same essays and production notes only for "Cronos."
"Trilogía de Guillermo del Toro" is a must-see for lovers of cinema, horror, fantasy or just plain entertaining movies, particularly the ones that twine the mundane with the terrifyingly fantastical. A must-see.
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