What do you say about the best movie you saw all year? It's happened to all of us: that rare movie that completely knocks you over and blows you away, that takes you somewhere else for two hours or so and returns you wide-eyed and slackjawed, leaving the theater quietly and slightly stunned at having to return to mundane life. How can you write clearly and critically when you just want to say, "Damn, that was good."
I thought I might like Pan's Labyrinth (aka El Laberinto del Fauno) but then two days before I saw the movie at Fantastic Fest, I thought I might love Tideland and was sadly disappointed. Tideland may have cinematic merit but it is not lovable and it does tend to smack you in the face with some very repellent things. People do repellent things in Pan's Labyrinth, but you're not pulled out of the movie by sheer disgust -- you remain involved in the world of the film.