Pinocchio: More Disturbing Then It Had Any Right To Be

Written by Luke Barnes


The classic tale of Pinocchio, voiced by Gregory Mann, but now with added nightmarish creatures and fascist leaders.

Well this film achieved the impossible, it managed to make the Disney take on Pinocchio, animated not the trash live action, look tame by comparison. That is no small feat considering the fact that the animated Disney film has it fair share of deeply unsettling moments, but this film pips it by having some truly quite disturbing moments. Whether it is Pinocchio’s frequent deaths wherein he goes to an underworld like land and has conversations with frightening looking creatures, in most cases voiced by Tilda Swinton, or in the design of Pinocchio himself that never quite lets you settle down. In all honesty I found Pinocchio himself and the way he looked and acted to be the most scary thing about the film.

Writing this review for you now I can’t honestly say whether I enjoyed watching this film, it was certainly an experience viewing it though I don’t think wholly pleasant. Instead of giving it slap bang in the middle marks I have given it an above average score as whilst a lot of things in the film didn’t work for me or I found a little jarring, I like how far Del Toro pushed the concept and the risk he took with it, the Mussolini stuff he did was really quite daring and funny and fit the film in a way I wouldn’t have expected it to.

The ending will also be a source of contention for many as it is not by any account a happy ending, if anything it is fairly melancholic, it reminded me of the stylings of Tim Burton if that is any indication for you, but hey Ewan McGregor does a great job as the cricket and mostly keeps things light.

Overall, I can’t say I enjoyed the film but it is bold and some of it works really well.



A risky and more adult approach

The setting and time period



It is incredibly sad

Pinocchio himself is hard to warm towards because he looks unsettling

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