Monday, November 4, 2013

Cronos (1993)

Cronos is esteemed filmmaker Guillermo del Toro's first feature film, about an aging antique store owner who comes across a rare, centuries-old artifact developed by an alchemist who discovered the secret to immortality, at the price of an addiction-like craving for blood. It is sort of a Mexican tale of vampirism, with more of a scientific than a gothic mechanism at work. Ron Perlman (who stars as the titular character in del Toro's adaptation of Hellboy) costars as the roughshod nephew of a greedy industry head who craves immortality and has been searching for the Cronos device for decades.

Certainly, Cronos is a human story with heart, but I'll take the heartless creatures in 30 Days of Night over del Toro's alchemical vampire any day of the week. Del Toro is inarguably a talented filmmaker and creative storyteller, and he has a most admirable dedication to the dark side of human imagination, but I think that maybe his sensibilities don't completely mesh with mine. Pan's Labyrinth was a very good movie, and I have yet to see The Devil's Backbone, which I hear good things about, but I think that, especially considering how much he worships monsters, del Toro has yet to grow into the reputation he's been given.

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