Created in 1881 by Carlo Collodi, Pinocchio has since been adapted many times. The year 2022 even brings it particularly up to date, since Disney+ has offered a live-action version. Now it’s Netflix’s turn to release a feature film by Guillermo Del Toro. For the occasion, the filmmaker revisits the story of this tale in the best possible way by signing one of the most convincing adaptations of Pinocchio ever made.
Pinocchio goes from small to big History
Briefly summarize this film Pinocchio is almost a miracle, as the latter addresses exciting themes. We can start by talking about the prologue of this feature film that stuck with us on the screen. We follow the life of Geppetto, an old wood sculptor and his only son.
The latter is the victim of a bombardment, and his death leaves his father in a state of dejection and tragic isolation. He then manages to sculpt a new wooden companion: Pinocchio, and this is the beginning of a new adventure.
Once this painful introduction passed, the film embarks us in a difficult and particular time: that of Italy between the two wars. Pinocchio finds himself, in spite of himself, embarked on a school for young fascists.
The puppet even goes so far as to meet Benito Mussolini in circumstances that we let you discover. The fascist threat is deliciously mocked, while our hero makes fun of the “Duce” he calls “Il Dolce”. “I wanted to evoke a world where everyone behaves like a puppet and obeys finger and eye, and where the only rebellious creature is a puppet”explained Guillermo Del Toro in an interview.
These passages are good because the rest of the plot remains very dark. The story regularly, but quite subtly, evokes the themes of death and mourning. Far from the tale for sanitized children, the choices of the characters can prove to be quite hard, even cruel.
However, and this is undoubtedly one of the main qualities of this feature film: the script never turns into cynicism, and we have a vision full of tenderness of the destiny of these heroes tossed about by the small and the big History.
Guillermo Del Toro also recognizes that Pinocchio is a message for our time: “It concerns me because it is something that humanity seems to be returning to. Fascism is always present in the background, or in the foreground”.
Pinocchio: a visual and auditory slap
Visually, Pinocchio is very impressive. We also advise you to watch the 30-minute making-of offered in addition by Netflix. The whole thing is done in stop motion. This technique has already proven itself on works such as Fantastic Mr Fox Where The strange Christmas of Mr. Jack.
The complexity of certain sequences leaves you speechless. The technology and craftsmanship of the production serve the story perfectly. Guillermo Del Toro was therefore able to represent this universe that was close to his heart. There’s a fantastic vibe to it, while certain passages almost pour into a spooky horror atmosphere.
Pinocchio is also very oriented on music with an original soundtrack by Alexandre Desplat, a French composer who has already won an Oscar for The Shape of Water. It borrows in particular from the Italian variety theater of the 1930s. Note that the actors who double the characters of the film such as Christopher Waltz or Ewan McGregor push the song themselves, all brilliantly.
This Pinocchio by Guillermo Del Toro is a bit of a chef’s surprise that Netflix slips under the tree of its subscribers. We can only strongly advise you to watch this revisited version that is tender, sensitive, moving, and not devoid of humor.