Frames of Preference: Pan’s Labyrinth

Pan's LabyrinthFairy tale films tend to go one of two ways: a dark retelling that makes us re-frame what seemed like an innocuous story of children in the forest, or a CG-heavy re-imagining of the imagery and plot from the source material. Pan’s Labyrinth works both ways because of it’s focus on a child’s view of the traumatic events of World War II. In Pan’s world, family and strangers become kind elves and horrible demons, and her trips into the forest always echo her life. Even though it’s not based on any particular fairy tale, Pan’s Labyrinth somehow feels like an amalgamation of every “lost girl in the woods” trope, but much more dark and sinister.