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More like this:. With a visual language based on technical blueprints common throughout the publication, Park brings us the playful, the esoteric and the peculiar. Set against the backdrop of fascist Spain in , Pan's Labyrinth is a dark fairy tale that distils his distinctive mix of fact and fantasy, poetry and politics, pain and pleasure. It's an epic, poetic vision in which the grim realities of war are matched and mirrored by a descent into an underworld populated by fearsomely beautiful monsters - a transformative, life-affirming nightmare which is, for my money, the very best film of the year.

Since the early s, del Toro has divided his film-making between personal European projects the modern vampiric chiller Cronos in ; the ghostly Spanish Civil War fable The Devil's Backbone in and big-budget Hollywood hits ongoing comic-book franchises Blade II in , and Hellboy in Those familiar with the guilty ghosts of The Devil's Backbone will recognise key motifs in his new fable, about a young girl's exploration of a labyrinthine underworld in Franco-era Spain.

The young heroine of Pan's Labyrinth is Ofelia, whose widowed mother, Carmen, has recently married Vidal, a vicious captain in Spain's Civil Guard, involved in policing anti-fascist Maquis resistance in the mountainous wooded northern region. Vidal's housekeeper, Mercedes, befriends Ofelia, protecting her from her stepfather's wrath while maintaining secretive connections with the Maquis.

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Meanwhile, Ofelia meets an alarmingly devious faun who suggests that she may be the lost princess of a beautiful and terrifying netherworld. While Mercedes attempts to help the Maquis in their struggles, Ofelia embarks on a quest that will test her true nature. This quest involves a journey through a labyrinth, a word with which the Civil War has become intrinsically linked think of key historical accounts such as Gerald Brenan's The Spanish Labyrinth and which served as the 'perfect metaphor' for del Toro's endeavours.

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You think of the transit of Spanish society from the s to the incredible explosion of the post-Franco period. The s in Spain were like the s in the rest of the world! In the movie, Ofelia is a "princess who forgot who she was and where she came from", who progresses through the labyrinth to emerge as a promise that gives children the chance never to know the name of their father - the fascist. It's something that has intrigued me since Cronos, through Hellboy and now to Pan's Labyrinth: the way your choices define you.

And I thought it would be great to counterpoint an institutional lack of choice, which is fascism, with the chance to choose, which the girl takes in this movie. Del Toro's faun is just one of the film's menagerie of fantastical creatures and monsters, drawn from sources that range from Goya's paintings to Clive Barker's Books of Blood.

Pan's Labyrinth () - IMDb

As always, the director sketched each character in the notebooks that are his constant companions, extraordinary documents of his mind at work and his obsessive attention to detail. Here we find the original drawings for the 'vegetable baby' which Ofelia places beneath her mother's bed, nurtured with milk and magic, and the terrifying 'pale man' whose ire she arouses by stealing from his table.

Pan's Labyrinth Doug Jones ALL Scenes

The original design was just an old man who seemed to have lost a lot of weight and was covered in loose skin. Then I removed the face, so it became part of the personality of the institution. But then, what to do about the eyes? I only saw the movie once, a million years ago, and I thought this was an extension of the story or just inspired by it. But from what I understand because I sure don't remember enough to say for certain is that this is an expanded, additionally layered, version of the movie itself. Which should tell So, I totally thought this was an MG story and hahahaha no.

Which should tell you who should or should not be reading this. This is classified as YA I think but it is quite dark, if not considered outright horror, but it's not just the fantastical elements that are dark. It's the human elements, too. The brutalities done not only by bad men during times of war but bad men, period, who need no excuse.

There is melancholy and bitterness and grief and loneliness and yet the enduring belief in magic, in fairytales, in hope, too. The story is both bleak and yet also whimsical, captivatingly creative and cringey creepy, and the illustrations were just gorgeous. This book consumed me and I loved every moment. View all 4 comments. Aug 02, Charles Edwards-Freshwater rated it it was ok. First of all, I want to say that Pan's Labyrinth is one of my all time favourite films in the world. It is such a wonderful blend of dark magic, wonder and grim reality that it is everything I've ever wanted from a story and more.

However, the novelisation by Cornelia Funke somehow falls flat. Yes, the story and most of the dialogue remains unchanged, and that's a good thing, as it was already very accomplished and there's no sense in messing with good elements already in place. My issue was more First of all, I want to say that Pan's Labyrinth is one of my all time favourite films in the world. My issue was more with the lack of description that we are treated to in the novel version - instead of feeling the magic of the labyrinth, the banquet hall with the Pale Man, the muddy roots of the giant tree, instead I feel like we are given basic and mostly rather bland descriptions of the movie scenes, all of which feel quite rushed.

For example, in the banquet scene I wanted to really smell the aromas of the food and feel hungry at the thought of the flavours - instead we get a pretty minimal list of food and a description saying the room is red like fire There is little further insight to the story, aside from a few new fairytales that link the events of the novel. These quite nice additions if not a bit lacking in magic themselves. I think my biggest gripe with the book is that, with such a focus on the magical side etc, it does somehow diminish the ambiguity of the original film, in which the option was always there that Ofelia is imaging the whole thing.

This feels very much geared towards us believing in the magic of the labyrinth. For example, when Captain Vidal finds Ofelia speaking to the faun in the labyrinth near the end, Corenlia Funke basically brushes off his inability to see him as his fault for having too much darkness in his heart or some rubbish - it even goes "if he even had one [a heart]" which is just jarringly bad! I guess you can still really try to interpret it as all imaginary and a much more tragic tale, but I feel like this wasn't the direction the writing was going at all. I also found the prose so variable in quality in places - what was the audience of this book?

It's written so much as a simple kids book in places and then we have the swearing and dark realities of the other parts of the plot alongside and it all just feels so disconnected and not throughly thought through. I can only assume this novelisation is directly marketed towards people like me who love the film, not people looking to discover the magic of this story for the first time - and that's rather a shame.

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Overall a pretty lifeless attempt and the film does it much, much better. Jul 20, Sasha rated it really liked it Shelves: read-in , fantasy , audiobooks. I don't know why I was expecting something different from the movie as the movie came first I really enjoyed it, I love that type of a bit darker and twisted tales so I was happy listening to it. And Guillermo does the narration so it was even better!!!

Inkheart and Reckless are fantastic trilogies and The Thief Lord is one of my favourite books and movie adaptations of all time. But the real phenomenon, which left me speechless, is the fact that Funke is co-wrote it with the director and mastermind himself, Guillermo del Toro! As mentioned in the book, they both admire the work of each other and so it seems obvious that they had to work together one day. Ofelia, still mourning her father, is worrying about her mother who does not cope well with the pregnancy. Her mother does not seem to see what a monster her new husband is and so she tries to convince her several times.

However, her mother reminds her that, unfortunately, the world is not like it is described in the books and that there is no magic and no happy ending, not as Ofelia would have it.

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Soon after her arrival she hears the woods calling to her and Ofelia meets the faun, Pan, for the first time. He is certain that Ofelia is the reincarnation of the long-lost princess Moanna, the rightful heir of the world beneath where the sun and the moon never shines.

To prove her identity, Ofelia receives three tasks from Pan which she must complete successfully. Only then, she will be able to rejoin her true family. Besides the numerous stunning illustrations which can be found between the pages, you will read short stories about the past as well. These stories help you to understand what has happened with Moanna and the people indirectly affected by her faith. Cornelia Funke is the children and YA author for me.

At least, it worked for me, so thank you mum! However, I need to warn you, this book is not for a child who is sensitive when it comes to death and blood as it takes place in a time when Europe was at war. Sometimes it is just hard to see through it. Despite its brutal core, the story is wrapped by a romantic cloak.

There is a lot of awful things happening and still, the story ends in a way that you cannot stop thinking that in the end, there is a peaceful place waiting for you where you will be surrounded by your loved ones and all the bad things will soon lie in your past and you will never think about them again. Now that I have read the book, I want to watch the movie again, especially because I love the fact that del Toro is loyal to the true form of transformation, which is handmade by make-up artists and does not CGI his monsters, but also because I simply love Doug Jones, with whom he has worked with in countless movies since , and who plays Pan.

Jul 17, David J rated it liked it Shelves: first-edition , my-library , anticipated , purchased Director Guillermo del Toro brought realism and magic and fantasy and history and fairy-tale and the power of words together and made something truly spectacular. So there was no doubt in my mind that I was going to read this illustrated adaptation as soon as possible. It should be quite exciting for those who aren't familiar with 3. It should be quite exciting for those who aren't familiar with the story, though. Ofelia eventually wanders into the maze and finds herself interacting with a faun, who believes her to be the long-lost Princess Moanna of the underworld kingdom.

She must complete three tasks to prove herself as the princess and return to live for eternity with her loving parents. But, for me, it was just missing something--probably because my imagination had already been captured by the film.

Pan's Labyrinth: The Labyrinth of the Faun

Oh, well I absolutely loved the movie and when I saw that this book had been published in honour of the film, I just had to get my hands on it. Not 4. Not only was the story captivating, the illustrations in this book are just so beautiful and really made this story come to life. Your spirit shall forever remain among the humans. You shall age like them, you shall die like them, and all memory of you shall fade in time. And we'll vanish along with it. You will never see us again. Apr 21, Kyle marked it as to-read. This was a nice adaptation of the film, but I think it lacked any sign of Funke's writing and style.

She was clearly fit to the challenge of making this story work in written form, and I think the insight into the characters and the deeper exploration of the world was nice, but it just didn't stand out. Maybe if I was a bigger fan of the movie this would have made more of an impact, but I think I was chasing more of Cornelia Funke's traditional style when I picked this up and it just wasn't This was a nice adaptation of the film, but I think it lacked any sign of Funke's writing and style. Maybe if I was a bigger fan of the movie this would have made more of an impact, but I think I was chasing more of Cornelia Funke's traditional style when I picked this up and it just wasn't there.

Nov 19, Celia McMahon rated it it was amazing.