(Photo by New Line/courtesy Everett Collection)
All Guillermo del Toro Movies Ranked by Tomatometer
One easy way to get that Best Picture win at the Oscars? Spend your burgeoning directing career on strange and grotesque genre pictures, then hook up with a major studio to work on Lord of the Rings, with hundreds of millions of dollars in budget. Obviously! It worked for Peter Jackson, whose Dead Alive and Meet the Feebles movies did little to suggest he would one day get the gold trophy for The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King.
And it worked for Guillermo del Toro, whose success with cult cinema fanatics led him to toil for years on The Hobbit movies. Del Toro didn’t win anything for those movies — hell, he didn’t even end up directing them. But he did get the top prize for The Shape of Water, an unlikely win for the unlikeliest of love stories, which currently puts a lovely bow on a career characterized by dark fantasy, big sci-fi, and creature features, of visions where the lines between dream and nightmare blur.
Del Toro got his start in his native Mexico in the early ’90s with the mythological Cronos, featuring Ron Perlman in the first of several collaborations. As with many international filmmakers with a hit on their hands, del Toro was wooed to Hollywood to do exactly his thing… except, of course, with tons of studio interference, notes, and meddling. The result was the compromised Mimic, whose lackluster reception was enough to get del Toro to go back abroad for his next film. The Spain set-and-shot The Devil’s Backbone was another cult hit, again enough for him to get tempted back to the States.
What followed was Blade II and Hellboy, which gave the pre-Marvel Cinematic Universe era of comic book movies an unpredictable shot in the arm. The latter film reunited him with Perlman, along with physical artist Doug Jones, who he first worked with on Mimic and would be crucial on his journey towards The Shape of Water.
2005’s Pan’s Labyrinth was a cross-cultural phenomenon, a grim fantasy and political commentary that’s still heavily watched today. Then 2008’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army had the unfortunate luck of being released a week before The Dark Knight. It took del Toro five years to return with the mech brawler Pacific Rim, which was followed by the Gothic ghost love story Crimson Peak. And then we come to The Shape of Water, his tender ode to Creature from the Black Lagoon.
And those are just the movies he did end up making. Del Toro’s travails in film development hell are frequently the subject of public attention, with his name attached to a myriad of promising projects like Dark Universe, At the Mountains of Madness, and a third Hellboy. On the horizon in active development is a remake of Nightmare Alley (Toni Collette was recently announced to join Bradley Cooper) and an adaptation of Pinocchio, a once-dead project Netflix revived last year. Maybe in the future we’ll see those movies on lists like these, but for now, here’s every Guillermo del Toro movie ranked by Tomatometer!
Adjusted Score: 61.006%
Critics Consensus: Though Blade II offers more of what worked in the original, its plot and character development appear to have been left on the cutting room floor.
Four years after scoring a box-office touchdown with Blade (1998), actor Wesley Snipes returns to portray the Marvel Comics character... [More]
Adjusted Score: 62.757%
Critics Consensus: Mimic finds director Guillermo del Toro struggling to inject his unique sensibilities into a studio picture - and delivering just enough genre thrills to recommend.
While one would imagine that the average New Yorker would be used to dealing with bugs after years of apartment... [More]
Adjusted Score: 83.006%
Critics Consensus: It may sport more style than substance, but Pacific Rim is a solid modern creature feature bolstered by fantastical imagery and an irresistible sense of fun.
When legions of monstrous creatures, known as Kaiju, started rising from the sea, a war began that would take millions... [More]
Adjusted Score: 83.157%
Critics Consensus: Crimson Peak offers an engaging -- albeit somewhat slight -- diversion driven by a delightfully creepy atmosphere and director Guillermo del Toro's brilliant knack for unforgettable visuals.
When her heart is stolen by a seductive stranger, a young woman is swept away to a house atop a... [More]
Adjusted Score: 86.485%
Critics Consensus: With wit, humor and Guillermo del Toro's fantastic visuals, the entertaining Hellboy transcends the derivative nature of the genre.
Mike Mignola's acclaimed comic book series about a creature from Hades who joins the battle against evil arrives on the... [More]
Adjusted Score: 95.34%
Critics Consensus: Guillermo del Toro crafts a stellar comic book sequel, boasting visuals that are as imaginative as the characters are endearing.
Ron Perlman returns to the role of the big red BPRD agent in this sequel to 2004's Hellboy, directed once... [More]
Adjusted Score: 93.01%
Critics Consensus: Guillermo del Toro's unique feature debut is not only gory and stylish, but also charming and intelligent.
This surreal variant on the classic vampire tale is the directorial debut of Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, who garnered... [More]
Adjusted Score: 95.563%
Critics Consensus: Creepily atmospheric and haunting, The Devil's Backbone is both a potent ghost story and an intelligent political allegory.
The mournful fable of the Santa Lucia School during the last days of the Spanish Civil War. An imposing stone... [More]
Adjusted Score: 110.56%
Critics Consensus: The Shape of Water finds Guillermo del Toro at his visually distinctive best -- and matched by an emotionally absorbing story brought to life by a stellar Sally Hawkins performance.
From master story teller, Guillermo del Toro, comes THE SHAPE OF WATER - an other-worldly fairy tale, set against the... [More]
Adjusted Score: 102.868%
Critics Consensus: Pan's Labyrinth is Alice in Wonderland for grown-ups, with the horrors of both reality and fantasy blended together into an extraordinary, spellbinding fable.
Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro returns to the phantasmagorical cinema that defined such early fare as Cronos and The Devil's... [More]