Did you like THE SHAPE OF WATER?

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Technically it was good filmmaking. The flow of the story was good, so was the acting and every other department associated with the movie like art direction, costumes, etc.

The story was interesting, but the symbolism and political statements seemed forced. Like they were out to create a caricature of the 'White man', which is the favourite punching bag of the current times. As an Indian I find that strange and rather unhelpful. I don't want to derail the topic, but I will simply add that one doesn't need to insult a group to improve diversity or make a statement. It only makes matters worse. I almost felt that Del Toro was pandering to the Tumblr crowd.

On a side note, I preferred Call me by your name from the nominations, but for me Blade Runner 2049 was the best movie of that award season.



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Originally Posted by Iroquois
To be fair, you have to have a fairly high IQ to understand MovieForums.com.



With respect to those who enjoy it, I found this film to be little more than gold-plated dung.



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Welcome to the human race...
The story was interesting, but the symbolism and political statements seemed forced. Like they were out to create a caricature of the 'White man', which is the favourite punching bag of the current times. As an Indian I find that strange and rather unhelpful. I don't want to derail the topic, but I will simply add that one doesn't need to insult a group to improve diversity or make a statement. It only makes matters worse. I almost felt that Del Toro was pandering to the Tumblr crowd.
In fairness, the film does feature sympathetic white male characters (the ones played by Richard Jenkins and Michael Stuhlbarg) to contrast against Michael Shannon's villain. The film gets that the problem isn't so much with all white men but those who are specifically like Shannon's character in having a cruel, narrow-minded, and selfish attitude towards "the other". He may seem like a caricature, but there are still too many men like him out there. In trying to make a statement about diversity, one does have to acknowledge those who would wholeheartedly oppose it and criticise them for taking such a disagreeable position - if this comes across as "insulting" those particular people, then so be it. Better than trying and inevitably failing to appease them.
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Way too much stupid talk on the forum. Iroquois, I’m thinking about you.



That's obviously a false dichotomy, though. There's a clear middle-ground between "appeasing" awful people and having blatantly two-dimensional characters in Best Picture winners.

I don't think Three Billboards is a deeply insightful treatise on race, but it managed to have a prejudiced character who felt like an actual person, and talked like an actual person, rather than a fabricated sadist.
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Maybe so, though I question how much a character needs to be multi-dimensional in order to "feel like a real person".



I mean, if you literally believe there are a lot of two-dimensional people walking around out there, I don't know what to tell you. When you investigate people as individuals, it turns out nobody is actually like that, even people you despise, and even people you have good reason to despise. And even if you think there are, they're not particularly interesting to depict or give a significant amount of screen time to.

There's also no reason to have this conversation in the abstract, that I can see. The issue is Michael Shannon's character, not whether depicting a flattened personality can ever be a reasonable choice. And his character (portrayed, again, by an actor capable of a lot more) is comically evil and sadistic in a really boring and thoughtless way that detracts from, rather than enhances, the things the film is trying to say.



In fairness, the film does feature sympathetic white male characters (the ones played by Richard Jenkins and Michael Stuhlbarg) to contrast against Michael Shannon's villain. The film gets that the problem isn't so much with all white men but those who are specifically like Shannon's character in having a cruel, narrow-minded, and selfish attitude towards "the other". He may seem like a caricature, but there are still too many men like him out there. In trying to make a statement about diversity, one does have to acknowledge those who would wholeheartedly oppose it and criticise them for taking such a disagreeable position - if this comes across as "insulting" those particular people, then so be it. Better than trying and inevitably failing to appease them.
I felt Shannon's character had hints at being a little more than that in terms of for example his focus on the consumerist "American dream" buying his new car and fighting to advance his career that didn't quite end up as realised as they might have been.

I'd say the film did offer more than just other characters playing off of his obvious antagonist as well though. I think its actually more interesting how it plays with the other more friendly characters view of Hawkin's. The idea that as a disabled person she's treated in an almost childlike fashion by them and the story is ultimately of her asserting herself as an adult.



Its I spose slightly Oscar baitish in that it makes reference to classic Hollywood films and includes some favourable politics but really no I don't think its that obvious an example. If it got favourable treatment I think it was due much more to Del Toro's status as so well liked/respected in the business but again as "makeup" Oscars go I don't think its that bad a result compared to say Marty finally winning for The Departed.



Eh, maybe in some ways. But there's a lot of weird stuff in the movie that seems pretty contrary to that goal, too.
I may be wrong, of course, as I don't really follow the Oscars but that's how it felt to me. It probably affects my perception too that when I saw it it was already nominated for the best movie.



Loved it actually lol
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