Pan's Labyrinth Review
Written by: azathoth
The film is about a girl, Ofelia, whose mom gets married to a military leader in Spain during a civil war. The Captain wants a boy child to carry on his manhood genes, and therefore only cares about impregnating his wife and ignoring the little girl brat. Eventually the wife gets pregnant, and now wifey can just make sure the new baby is OK. During all this, Ofelia is reading a magic book that does magic things.
There are about five subplots running through the entire movie, which makes the film a bit confused due to the amount of secondary characters. They all contribute to the story to lesser or greater degrees (and some made me cry). The story lines all weave together to fit into the main story line at the end, if a bit confusingly.
Since Ophelia is excluded from the normal day except for her mom and the servants, she runs around doing kid stuff. She finds a passageway to a more magical land, including a sentient tree and a magical book that tells her how to complete various tasks.
This is where I start to get bothered. A whole lot of the story deals with how Ophelia acts. She's told not to do something, yet then does it. She gets warned again, and does it again. Other characters also make stupid decisions. I realize everyone is under pressure, being in a near war zone-like situation, but at times I felt I was watching a horror movie where the characters decide "Hey, it would be a great idea to split up right about now".
I won't go into anymore detail, because you should see this film. The visuals are stunning, the FX are great. The problems I had with the film may not even bother you in the least. And as silly as I thought it was, I loved the ending (this one of those crying parts).
A must see and buy. I have it, and have watched it several times. I took off points for the irritating parts. Several people have told me I am overly critical about this, but this is how I feel about the film.