The Shape Of Water (15)

Romance (2017)
123mins US

Starring: Doug Jones, Michael Shannon, Sally Hawkins, Richard Jenkins, Octavia Spencer
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Writer(s): Vanessa Taylor, Guillermo del Toro
Listings: London | Rest of UK and Ireland

In 1962 Baltimore, Elisa works alongside good friend Zelda as a cleaner at a top-secret US government laboratory where scientist Robert Hoffstetler and his team are conducting experiments to promote America in the space race. Out of the blue, Colonel Richard Strickland arrives at the facility with a large metal tank, which contains a strange aquatic creature from South America. Elisa becomes emotionally attached to the amphibious wonder and hatches a daring escape plan.

Seen that movie? Leave a comment / review here >>

LondonNet Film Review
The Shape Of Water (15)

Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro recaptures the visual splendour and simmering menace of his Oscar-winning 2006 fantasy Pan's Labyrinth with a swoon-inducing reimagining of the Beauty And The Beast fairy tale set in 1962 Baltimore. The Shape Of Water is a gorgeous, erotically-charged love story, which empowers its richly drawn female characters to drive forward a tightly wound narrative and defeat prejudice in its myriad ugly forms. The script, co-written by del Toro and Vanessa Taylor, doesn't sugar coat the central romance between a mute cleaning lady and a carnivorous merman...

The Shape Of Water. Copyright: 2017 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. Caption: Sally Hawkins as Elisa Esposito and Doug Jones as the creature in The Shape Of Water, directed by Guillermo del Toro. Photo: Kerry Hayes. All Rights Reserved.Carnal desires of the spirited heroine are laid delightfully bare in virtually the opening scene in which she slides into an overflowing bath and pleasures herself in the two minutes it takes to hard boil three eggs for her packed lunch. Lustrous period detail evokes an era of suffocating Cold War paranoia with aplomb, reflected in snappy dialogue like when one kind-hearted scientist argues that it would be unconscionable to vivisect any creature capable of understanding and emotions. "So are the Soviets - and we still kill them, don't we?" coldly retorts a US soldier.

The story's "princess without a voice" is Elisa (Sally Hawkins). She works as a cleaner alongside sharp-tongued pal Zelda (Octavia Spencer) at Occam Aerospace Research Centre, a top-secret US government site where scientist Robert Hoffstetler (Michael Stuhlbarg) conducts experiments to propel America ahead of the Soviet Union in the space race. Cleaning supervisor Fleming (David Hewlett) calls together staff to relate exciting news about the arrival of "the most sensitive asset ever to be housed in this facility". Soon after, Colonel Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon) shepherds a large metal container into one of the laboratories. Inside is a beguiling aquatic creature (Doug Jones), which Strickland boasts he "dragged out of the river muck in South America". Elisa becomes emotionally attached to the merman, using sign language and music as a crude yet effective form of communication. They eventually fall in love and the cleaner hatches a hare-brained plan to smuggle her web-footed paramour out of the facility so he can be returned to the wild. "It is not even human," argues scaredy-cat neighbour Giles (Richard Jenkins). "If we don't do something," furious signs Elisa, "neither are we."

The Shape Of Water delivers on the dizzying promise of 13 Oscar and 12 Bafta nominations, conjuring an intoxicating spell through mesmerising performances, sharp writing and del Toro's directorial daring. Hawkins is luminous and heartbreaking, speaking volumes without saying a word - save for a musical fantasy sequence that choreographs a romantic pas de deux reminiscent of yesteryear's La La Land. Sparing graphic violence punctuates the inter-species amour. Everyone is expendable in del Toro's haunting fable, including at least one unsuspecting household pet that loses its head in lurid close-up. Me-ouch.

- Kim Hu

The Shape Of Water. Copyright: 2017 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. Caption: Sally Hawkins as Elisa Esposito and Doug Jones as the creature in The Shape Of Water, directed by Guillermo del Toro. Photo: Kerry Hayes. All Rights Reserved.

London Cinemas

From Friday 25th May
To Thursday 31st May

- Empire Sutton
- Empire Walthamstow

« Back to Index

Rest of UK and Irish Cinemas

Listed in alphabetical order by city/place name followed by cinema name.

From Friday 18th May
To Thursday 24th May

- Andover, Odeon Andover
- Aylesbury, Odeon Aylesbury
- Ayr, Odeon Ayr
- Banbury, Odeon Banbury
- Barrow-in-Furness, Vue Barrow (Apollo)
- Basingstoke, Odeon Basingstoke
- Basingstoke, Vue Basingstoke Festival Place
- Bath, Odeon Bath
- Bedford, Vue Bedford
- Belfast, Odeon Belfast
- Bicester, Vue Bicester
- Birmingham, Odeon Birmingham New Street
- Blackpool, Odeon Blackpool
- Bootle, Odeon Liverpool Switch Island
- Bournemouth, Odeon Bournemouth BH2
- Bracknell, Odeon Bracknell
- Bradford, Odeon Leeds-Bradford
- Bridgend, Odeon Bridgend
- Brighton, Odeon Brighton
- Bristol, Odeon Bristol
- Bristol, Vue Bristol Longwell Green
- Bromborough, Odeon Bromborough
- Bury, Vue Bury The Rock
- Camberley, Vue Camberley
- Canterbury, Odeon Canterbury
- Cardiff, Odeon Cardiff
- Carlisle, Vue Carlisle
- Carmarthen, Vue Carmarthen (Apollo)
- Cavan Town, Odeon Cavan
- Chatham, Odeon Chatham
- Chelmsford, Odeon Chelmsford
- Colchester, Odeon Colchester
- Coventry, Odeon Coventry
- Cramlington, Vue Cramlington
- Crewe, Odeon Crewe
- Cwmbran, Vue Cwmbran
- Darlington, Odeon Darlington
- Derby, Odeon Derby
- Doncaster, Vue Doncaster
- Dorchester, Odeon Dorchester
- Dublin, Odeon Blanchardstown
- Dublin, Odeon Charlestown
- Dublin, Odeon Coolock
- Dublin, Odeon Point Village
- Dudley, Odeon Dudley Merry Hill
- Dundee, Odeon Dundee
- Dunfermline, Odeon Dunfermline
- East Kilbride, Odeon East Kilbride
- Eastleigh, Vue Eastleigh
- Edinburgh, Odeon Edinburgh Fort Kinnaird
- Edinburgh, Odeon Edinburgh Lothian Road
- Edinburgh, Odeon Edinburgh Wester Hailes
- Edinburgh, Vue Edinburgh Ocean Terminal
- Epsom, Odeon Epsom
- Exeter, Odeon Exeter
- Gateshead, Odeon Metrocentre
- Gateshead, Vue Gateshead
- Glasgow, Odeon Glasgow Springfield Quay
- Glasgow, Vue Glasgow Fort
- Grays, Vue Thurrock
- Guildford, Odeon Guildford
- Halifax, Vue Halifax
- Hamilton, Vue Hamilton
- Harrogate, Odeon Harrogate
- Hastings, Odeon Hastings
- Hatfield, Odeon Hatfield
- Hereford, Odeon Hereford
- Holyhead, Ucheldre Centre
- Huddersfield, Odeon Huddersfield
- Hull, Odeon Hull
- Inverness, Vue Inverness
- Kettering, Odeon Kettering
- Kilmarnock, Odeon Kilmarnock
- Lancaster, Vue Lancaster
- Leamington Spa, Vue Leamington Spa (Apollo)
- Leeds, Vue Leeds The Light
- Leicester, Odeon Leicester
- Limerick, Odeon Limerick
- Lincoln, Odeon Lincoln
- Liverpool, Odeon Liverpool ONE
- Livingston, Vue Livingston
- Llanelli, Odeon Llanelli
- Loughborough, Odeon Loughborough
- Maidenhead, Odeon Maidenhead
- Maidstone, Odeon Maidstone
- Manchester, Odeon Manchester Great Northern
- Manchester, Odeon Trafford Centre
- Manchester, Vue Manchester Printworks
- Mansfield, Odeon Mansfield
- Milton Keynes, Odeon Milton Keynes Stadium
- Naas, Odeon Naas
- Newark, Odeon Newark
- Newbridge, Odeon Newbridge
- Newbury, Vue Newbury
- Newcastle-under-Lyme, Vue Newcastle-under-Lyme
- Northwich, Odeon Northwich
- Norwich, Odeon Norwich
- Norwich, Vue Norwich
- Nuneaton, Odeon Nuneaton
- Oldham, Odeon Oldham
- Orpington, Odeon Orpington
- Oxford, Odeon Oxford George Street
- Oxford, Vue Oxford
- Paignton, Vue Torbay (Apollo)
- Plymouth, Vue Plymouth
- Portlaoise, Odeon Portlaoise
- Portsmouth, Odeon Port Solent
- Portsmouth, Vue Portsmouth
- Preston, Odeon Preston
- Renfrew, Odeon Braehead
- Rochdale, Odeon Rochdale
- Salford, Vue Manchester Lowry
- Salisbury, Odeon Salisbury
- Scunthorpe, Vue Scunthorpe
- Sheffield, Odeon Sheffield
- Southampton, Odeon Southampton
- Southend-on-Sea, Odeon Southend
- Southport, Vue Southport
- Stillorgan, Odeon Stillorgan
- Stirling, Vue Stirling
- Stoke-on-Trent, Odeon Stoke
- Stroud, Vue Stroud (Apollo)
- Swadlincote, Odeon Swadlincote
- Swansea, Odeon Swansea
- Swansea, Vue Swansea
- Tamworth, Odeon Tamworth
- Taunton, Odeon Taunton
- Telford, Odeon Telford
- Thanet, Vue Westwood Cross
- Thornton-Cleveleys, Vue Cleveleys
- Trowbridge, Odeon Trowbridge
- Tunbridge Wells, Odeon Tunbridge Wells
- Wallsend, Odeon Silverlink
- Warrington, Odeon Warrington
- Waterford, Odeon Waterford
- Watford, Vue Watford
- West Bromwich, Odeon West Bromwich
- Weston-super-Mare, Odeon Weston-Super-Mare
- Worcester, Odeon Worcester
- Worcester, Vue Worcester
- Wrexham, Odeon Wrexham

« Back to Index