The Devil's Backbone Poster

Release Date: November 21st, 2001

DVD Release Date: June 25th, 2002

R|1 hr 46 min

Plot Summary
After losing his father, 10-year-old Carlos (Fernando Tielve) arrives at the Santa Lucia School, which shelters orphans of the Republican militia and politicians, and is taken in by the steely headmistress, Carmen (Marisa Paredes), and the kindly professor, Casares (Federico Luppi). Soon after his arrival, Carlos has a run-in with the violent caretaker, Jacinto (Eduardo Noriega). Gradually, Carlos uncovers the secrets of the school, including the youthful ghost that wanders the grounds.

Cast: Marisa Paredes, Eduardo Noriega, Federico Luppi, Fernando Tielve, Irene Visedo, Iñigo Garcés, José Manuel Lorenzo, Paco Maestre

Director: Guillermo del Toro

Genres: Thriller

Production Co: Good Machine, El Deseo S.A.

Distributors: Sony Pictures Classics

Keywords: Mystery, Emotional, 1930s

Ratings & Reviews

view all
  • With The Devil's Backbone, Del Toro pulls an Amenábar by dishing out sophisticated war commentary with bone-chilling dread. show more

  • It's a horror flick, and a creepily good one, that also functions as an allegory of the war that still haunts Spain seven decades later.

  • Creepy and compelling and beautifully shot, The Devil's Backbone is a tale of the supernatural that feels completely natural. Its realness is what makes it so scary.

See all critic reviews on