Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio


D: Guillermo del Toro & Mark Gustafson

Netflix / Double Dare You / Shadow Machine / The Jim Henson Company / Taller del Chucho (Guillermo del Toro, Lisa Henson, Gary Ungar, Alex Bulkley, Corey Campodonico)

US/Mexico 🇺🇸🇲🇽 2022

117 mins


W: Guillermo del Toro, Patrick McHale & Matthew Robbins [based on the novel “The Adventures of Pinocchio” by Carlo Collodi]

Mus: Alexandre Desplat

voices of: Gregory Mann (Pinocchio / Carlo), Ewan McGregor (Sebastian J. Cricket), David Bradley (Geppetto), Christoph Waltz (Count Volpe), Tilda Swinton (The Wood Sprite / Death), Cate Blanchett (Spazzatura)

2022 saw no less than three Pinocchio movies to come to the screen (following Disney’s live-action version and a Russian animated film which is best forgotten), of which Guillermo del Toro’s stop-motion animation version is head and shoulders above the rest.

Though adapted from Carlo Colladi’s original source novel, this is heavily influenced by the 2002 print of the book, illustrated by Gris Grimly, though Guillermo del Toro’s own trademark is also firmly stamped with the visual style.

Set in fascist Italy immediately prior to the Second World War, a carpenter mourns the death of his son by creating a wooden puppet named Pinocchio, who is brought to life by a magical being and is guided on his journey by Sebastian J. Cricket, who serves as his conscience as he learns life lessons about honesty, duty and obedience.

It’s clear to see the amount of painstaking craft that’s gone into the production, with striking visuals & art direction, as well as a melancholy musical score and original songs that drive the plot.  The vocal cast is also strong, although I wasn’t completely satisfied with Gregory Mann’s pubescent voice as the eponymous character, feeling it was just a little too young.

While I feel that the 1940’s animated film from Disney will always be the classic version of the story, this certainly takes the podium as the first runner-up.


Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio