Fiction logo

"The Shape of Water" (2017)

A Unique Love Story that Transcends Boundaries and Conventions

By FELIX OlikaguPublished 6 months ago 4 min read
"The Shape of Water" (2017)
Photo by Leo Rivas on Unsplash


"The Shape of Water," directed by Guillermo del Toro, is a mesmerizing and unconventional love story that captivated audiences upon its release in 2017. This visually stunning film weaves together elements of fantasy, romance, and social commentary to create a narrative that transcends traditional boundaries. In this review, we will delve into the film's enchanting storyline, its remarkable performances, and its exploration of themes such as love, acceptance, and the power of empathy.

Unconventional Characters and Relationships:

At the heart of "The Shape of Water" lies an extraordinary relationship between Elisa Esposito, a mute janitor portrayed by Sally Hawkins, and an amphibious creature brought to life by Doug Jones. This unusual pairing challenges societal norms and beautifully illustrates the idea that love can flourish in unexpected places. The film deftly explores the emotional connection that develops between the two characters, emphasizing their shared isolation and the genuine bond they form, transcending language barriers and physical appearances.

Visual Spectacle and Cinematic Beauty:

Guillermo del Toro's masterful direction brings a poetic and ethereal quality to the film. The visual elements are nothing short of breathtaking, with each frame carefully composed to evoke a sense of wonder and enchantment. From the intricate set designs to the vivid color palette, the film creates a dreamlike atmosphere that immerses the audience in its magical world. The underwater sequences, in particular, are visually stunning, reflecting the beauty and fluidity of the characters' connection.

Powerful Performances:

Sally Hawkins delivers a tour de force performance as Elisa, effectively conveying her character's emotions and inner world without uttering a single word. Through her expressive eyes and body language, Hawkins brings Elisa's strength, vulnerability, and fierce determination to life. Doug Jones, hidden beneath layers of prosthetics, infuses the amphibious creature with a remarkable blend of grace and vulnerability, making it a fully realized and empathetic character.

Social Commentary and Themes:

While "The Shape of Water" is undeniably a love story, it also serves as a vehicle for social commentary. The film subtly examines themes of otherness, marginalization, and the oppressive nature of societal norms. It highlights the power dynamics and cruelty inherent in the Cold War era, drawing parallels to contemporary issues of discrimination and the need for compassion and understanding. Through its fantastical narrative, the film encourages viewers to question their own prejudices and consider the transformative power of acceptance and empathy.


"The Shape of Water" is a cinematic masterpiece that defies categorization and embraces the unconventional. Guillermo del Toro's visionary storytelling, combined with outstanding performances and stunning visuals, creates an unforgettable experience. This unique love story challenges societal conventions, celebrates diversity, and reminds us that true connection and acceptance can be found in the most unexpected places. "The Shape of Water" is a testament to the enduring power of love, reminding us that it knows no boundaries.

"The Shape of Water" is a film that resonates long after the final credits roll. It dares to explore the depths of human connection and challenges us to question our preconceived notions of love and acceptance. Guillermo del Toro's masterful storytelling invites us to suspend disbelief and embrace the extraordinary, reminding us that sometimes the most beautiful and meaningful relationships can be found in the most unlikely circumstances.

The film's message of empathy and understanding is particularly relevant in today's society, where divisions and prejudices often overshadow our shared humanity. "The Shape of Water" serves as a poignant reminder that true love and connection can exist beyond the constraints of societal norms and physical appearances.

In addition to its emotional depth, the film's technical aspects are equally commendable. The cinematography, production design, and musical score all contribute to creating an immersive and enchanting experience. Each element harmoniously blends together to enhance the story's magical atmosphere, making it a visual and auditory feast for the senses.

"The Shape of Water" defies genre conventions and offers a fresh perspective on the power of love. It challenges us to embrace the unknown, to celebrate differences, and to recognize that the bonds we form can transcend traditional boundaries. Del Toro's film is an artistic triumph that reminds us of the transformative potential of love while leaving an indelible mark on our hearts and minds.

In all, "The Shape of Water" is a cinematic masterpiece that deserves recognition for its unique storytelling, outstanding performances, and thought-provoking themes. It is a love story that breaks free from the constraints of convention, immersing viewers in a world of wonder and reminding us of the extraordinary power of love, acceptance, and the human spirit.

ClassicalHistoricalFan FictionfamilyAdventure

About the Creator

FELIX Olikagu

Captivating storyteller and compassionate wordsmith. Join me on a journey through the power of words, as we explore diverse topics with depth, creativity as it concerns Health issues, Environment, Emotions, and a touch of magic. Explore!

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2023 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.