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Mimic (#110 of 2)

The Films of Guillermo del Toro Ranked

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The Films of Guillermo del Toro Ranked

Fox Searchlight Pictures

The Films of Guillermo del Toro Ranked

Given how often his name has been attached to projects, particularly over the last 15 years, Guillermo del Toro could easily be mistaken for a tirelessly prolific director, whose near-annual output of darkly fantastical visions seems to make him the genre fanatic’s Woody Allen. But while del Toro has amassed roughly 30 film credits since making his 1985 debut with the horror short Doña Lupe, he’s only been at the helm of eight features. Other works, like The Orphanage, Kung Fu Panda 2, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which he famously came very close to directing, have seen him serve as everything from writer and executive producer to voice actor and creative consultant. With Pacific Rim, the latest (and most massively budgeted) of that limited del Toro line, hitting theaters on Friday, we’re looking back at the director’s body of work, which reflects a man as interested in the social, political, and existential as the bloody, the slimy, the fleshy, and the scaly. R. Kurt Osenlund

Angels and Insects: The Cinematic Spawn of Guillermo del Toro

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Angels and Insects: The Cinematic Spawn of Guillermo del Toro
Angels and Insects: The Cinematic Spawn of Guillermo del Toro

Mexican director Guillermo del Toro ranks as one of the most significant and intriguing directors of horror since the genre’s glory days during the 1970s. Yet, in many ways, del Toro is still working towards the peak of his talents. Examined individually, each of his films seems deeply flawed and even failed. Yet when taken together—arranged and assembled as a vast quilt of images—they achieve a nightmarish splendor that demands recognition. Consider the imagery in Cronos (1993), Mimic (1997), and Blade II (2002). In these films, the images are audacious, ecstatic, ghoulish, and beautiful—they achieve something akin to a connective tissue binding the films together as an oeuvre that achieves intermittent greatness.