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Octavia Spencer

Guillermo del Toro's 'The Shape of Water' is a genre-blending movie about loving 'otherness'

Guillermo del Toro's 'The Shape of Water' is a genre-blending movie about loving 'otherness'

“Ach-Shun!”

Before a take during the shooting of “The Shape of Water,” director and co-writer Guillermo del Toro lets loose a cannon-shot growl that erupts with gusto from somewhere deep within him.

The same could be said of the finished movie, an emotional love story, espionage thriller and monster movie all rolled into one. Its eccentric mix of tones and genres could only come from the vivid, creative imagination of Del Toro.

In the film, Sally Hawkins plays Elisa Esposito, a mute cleaning woman at a high-security government facility in early 1960s Baltimore. When agent Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon) brings in a mysterious creature (Doug Jones) — a part man, part...

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