At the 2018 Golden Globes, modern cinema history was made – but if you weren’t paying attention you may have missed it.
“Since childhood I’ve been faithful to monsters — I have been saved and absolved by them – Because monsters, I believe, are patron saints of our blissful imperfection.” – Guillermo Del Toro, accepting 2018 Golden Globe for best director for ‘The Shape of Water’
Guillermo Del Toro, mastermind director behind hits like Pans Labyrinth and Hellboy received recognition for his latest film, The Shape of Water, picking up a win for Best Director. What makes this significant is the fact that ‘monster’ movies are largely ignored for their artistic merits and are written off as mere box office fodder. They are hardly ever given credit for being forces of cinematic change and impact. Think of some of the best sci-fi, horror, and thriller genre films – Interstellar, Alien, Jurassic Park, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Mad Max: Fury Road, Get Out – how many received any critical acclaim from the Hollywood establishment, much less actual awards? There are usually some ‘token’ inclusions as nominations, but sci-fi/fantasy/horror flicks largely get the snub, and that is an unfair influence on what is deemed ‘culturally important’. If producers chase awards over art, we risk losing out on a lot of untold and still totally valid stories
Now, I argue that Hollywood has it’s head so far up it’s butt that their opinions don’t much matter and is often out of step with what the average movie-goer is looking for. I argue that people love the spectacle of the tent-pole release, but they want something that can actually resonate. Something that moves the way you feel and think. Film is such a power medium of expression and provocation, to toss away the genre of horror and monsters is too pretend that we live in a perfect world free from such scares. I’d argue that the monsters we face in the real world are much more frightening than anything conjured up on the big screen – why be disingenuous?
Here’s a sneak peak: