Disney’s Pinocchio turned Guillermo Del Toro terror

Acclaimed director Guillermo del Toro adaption of Pinocchio is set to hit Netflix soon

Ruth Harrison
15th February 2022
Image credit: IMDB
Mexican Director Guillermo del Toro, most acclaimed for The Shape of Water (2017) and Pan’s Labyrinth (2006), has just released a teaser for his take on the traditional Italian tale of Pinocchio (2022), the wooden boy.

The teaser gives us a glimpse into the twisted fantasy that Del Toro has become known for, turning Disney’s comical, anthropomorphic Jiminy into an unsettlingly realistic talking Cricket. Jiminy Cricket (now named Sebastian J. Cricket) is presented as the narrator of the film and fans of Del Toro will immediately recognise the physical similarity of it to the Faun who narrates Pan’s Labyrinth, a film which exposed the cruelty of Fascist Spain through the dark, twisted fantasy of a young girl.

As a fan of Del Toro’s masterful work, I am excited to witness his spin on the classic tale

Do we expect to see a similar style emerge in Pinocchio? Well, as the cricket suggests, this will be "a story you may think you know but you don’t." Perhaps Del Toro will draw on the darker side that Disney often likes to neglect when adapting traditional fairy tales. As the Brothers Grimm always believed, a story centred around children doesn’t necessarily mean that it should be sunshine and rainbows. Del Toro has built a visual aesthetic over the course of his film career that presents horrific gore alongside the suspense of the supernatural so the original narrative of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi fits his aesthetic perfectly. Already, I shudder to imagine the horror that Del Toro could conjure with Gepetto in the belly of the whale at the climax of the original Pinocchio.

The tale of Pinocchio has always been nightmarish and chilling to me as a child, so the sanitised Disney version did not do it justice. As a fan of del Toro’s masterful work, I am excited to witness his spin on the classic tale that will certainly tap into more nuance than Disney ever did.

Video credit: Netflix
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