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The Devil's Backbone

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Overview

Director Guillermo del Toro creeps out his audience with the chilling thriller The Devil's Backbone. Presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, this is a very clean and solid transfer that features only the slightest amount of edge enhancement in a few key scenes. Otherwise the image, colors, and black levels appear to be very well defined and even. The soundtrack is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround in Spanish (with optional English subtitles). Del Toro certainly knows the benefit of well-placed Surround ...
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Marisa Paredes, Eduardo Noriega, Federico Luppi, Fernando Tielve, Inigo Garces, Irene Visedo June 25, 2002 DVD New in new packaging. Language: Spanish. Run time: 106 mins. ... Aspect ratio: 1.85: 1. Originally released: 2001. Factory Sealed Brand New Read more Show Less

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Overview

Director Guillermo del Toro creeps out his audience with the chilling thriller The Devil's Backbone. Presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, this is a very clean and solid transfer that features only the slightest amount of edge enhancement in a few key scenes. Otherwise the image, colors, and black levels appear to be very well defined and even. The soundtrack is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround in Spanish (with optional English subtitles). Del Toro certainly knows the benefit of well-placed Surround sounds and creepy directional effects -- there are a multitude of them scattered all over this mix. Fans of a good scare should be pleased with this thorough and bombastic sound mix. The extra features on The Devil's Backbone include a very lively commentary track by director del Toro and cinematographer Guillermo Navarro (in which the two men discuss multiple aspects of the film's production), a short "making of" featurette which features interviews with the cast and crew (as well as some spoilers) in Spanish with English subtitles, several storyboard-to-sceen comparisons, and a theatrical trailer for the film.
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Special Features

Director and cinematographer commentary; making-of featurette; storyboard comparisons; theatrical trailers; Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 language track; English subtitles.
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Tony Nigro
After proving his mettle with the American genre hits Mimic and Blade 2, director Guillermo del Toro returns to Spanish-language filmmaking with The Devil's Backbone. An atmospheric ghost story set in a renegade orphanage during the Spanish Civil War specifically, 1939, the film frightens more through storytelling than via special effects. Following the mysterious disappearance of a resident/student, young Carlos Fernando Tielve arrives at the orphanage, which is an arid oasis in the war, run with tough love by headmistress Carmen Marisa Paredes, All About My Mother and Professor Casares Federico Luppi, Cronos, both of whom traffic in gold and moonshine on the side. Amid typical run-ins with the local bullies, Carlos discovers the ulterior motives of Jacinto Eduardo Noriega, Open Your Eyes, the aggressive young groundskeeper who has his eye on the headmistress's hidden treasure. Around the premises, Carlos begins to see a ghost child, who repeatedly foretells the explosive results of Jacinto's greed. The seasoned and impressive adult cast is well balanced by the young neophytes, who offer as much range and sympathy as their elders. Del Toro deals in eerie imagery, the most striking of which is an unexploded bomb dropped in the center of a courtyard; the ghost's a chiller, too, always appearing to be submerged underwater, even while walking the halls. Equally masterful is del Toro's handling of the trials of childhood. Rarely has a horror film been as honestly sensitive to growing pains as The Devil's Backbone.
All Movie Guide - Jason Buchanan
"What is a ghost?" asks Spanish director Guillermo Del Toro's supremely menacing supernatural tale of greed and sorrow set against the backdrop of the Spanish Civil War. Although fear of the unknown strikes a chord deep within the collective psyche, Del Toro shows that these things of a more familiar persuasion may, in fact, be the driving force behind their vengeful motivations. The desolate landscape that surrounds the dilapidated orphanage is the ideal setting for a tale of ghosts both literal and figurative - its crumbling corridors the perfect mix of beautiful melancholy and pregnant menace that underscores a sinister mystery slowly bubbling to the surface, and the vengeful supernatural force from the past that roams the decaying hallways which house children with little past or future. Screen newcomer Fernando Tielve shows great promise as the orphanage's fearful yet brave newcomer Carlos, while Obre los Ojos star Eduardo Noriega takes an effectively chilling turn as caretaker Jacinto - the so-called "prince without a kingdom" who is willing to trade his soul for a well-guarded treasure. Menace and mystery are the crucial factors which compel the viewer and command their attention, simultaneously driving the film forward with an increasing sense of dread and wonder. (Guillermo Navarro)'s stylishly aged lens adds the perfect visual texture through the dark nights, in which the children giggle with nervous fear of "the one who sighs," and the harsh daytime hours, in which they attempt to avoid the wrath of a more tangible ghost. In Navarro's lens, director Del Toro has found the perfect visual compliment to his deliberately brooding and seductive tale. A mysterious relic of war that sits silent in the courtyard of the orphanage is a centrally anchored reminder that, even though considered harmless by those who share its space, adds a layer of unresolved tension beneath the fragile surface of reality. With characters' pasts and sometimes questionable motivations slowly revealed as the viewer is taken deeper into the troubled minds of those who dwell in the isolated kingdom in limbo, Del Toro has crafted a finely tuned and quietly intense fable of the influence of ghosts on the fate of man.
Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert

The Devil's Backbone has been compared to The Others, and has the same ambition and intelligence, but is more compelling and even convincing.
Los Angeles Times - Kevin Thomas
With the ambitious and ominous The Devil's Backbone, Del Toro rises to a new level of accomplishment, adding history and politics to his distinctive blend.


The Devil's Backbone has been compared to The Others, and has the same ambition and intelligence, but is more compelling and even convincing.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/25/2002
  • UPC: 043396082830
  • Original Release: 2001
  • Rating:

  • Source: Sony Pictures
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Theatre Wide-Screen (1.85.1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: Español
  • Time: 1:50:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Marisa Paredes Carmen
Eduardo Noriega Jacinto
Federico Luppi Casares
Fernando Tielve
Inigo Garces Jaime
Irene Visedo
Berta Ojea
Technical Credits
Guillermo del Toro Director, Producer, Screenwriter
Agustín Almodóvar Executive Producer, Producer
Luis de la Madrid Editor
Jorge Hernandez Makeup
Cesar Macarron Art Director
Joaquin Manchado Camera Operator
Salva Mayolas Sound/Sound Designer
David Muñoz Screenwriter
Javier Navarrete Score Composer
Bertha Navarro Executive Producer, Producer
Guillermo Navarro Cinematographer
Miguel Rejas Sound/Sound Designer
Antonio Trashorras Screenwriter
José Vico Costumes/Costume Designer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Start [3:47]
2. Carlos [2:57]
3. Gálvez & Owl [2:53]
4. Mr. Ayala Leaves [3:03]
5. Number 12 [1:37]
6. Jacinto & Conchita [3:27]
7. One Who Sighs [2:45]
8. Bhisti Boys [6:01]
9. "Many of You Will Die" [10:51]
10. "He Can't Swim!" [2:56]
11. The Devil's Backbone [2:11]
12. Swap Meet [2:08]
13. The Last Time [2:46]
14. The Legend of Santi [6:34]
15. The Condemned [1:23]
16. Careful What You Wish For [3:21]
17. "We Have to Leave" [1:19]
18. Prince Without a Kingdom [1:39]
19. Prophecy Fulfilled [6:06]
20. A New Poem [2:16]
21. Watching for His Prey [5:28]
22. How Santi Died [1:36]
23. "Say You're Sorry" [6:07]
24. What Santi Wants [4:30]
25. Jacinto Returns [1:35]
26. The Escape [1:45]
27. Gold! [5:49]
28. Punishment Fits the Crime [2:01]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Movie
   Subtitles
      English
      Subtitles Off
   Scene Selections
   Special Features
      Director & Cinematographer Commentary: On
      Director & Cinematographer Commentary: Off
      Storyboard Comparisons
         Opening Sequence & Credits
            Storyboard
            Comparison Study
         A Bed for Carlos
            Storyboard
            Comparison Study
         One Who Sighs
            Storyboard
            Comparison Study
         Ghost in a Keyhole
            Storyboard
            Comparison Study
         Jaime and the Bomb
            Storyboard
            Comparison Study
      Making-of Featurette
      Theatrical Trailers
         The Devil's Backbone
         13 Ghosts (1960)
         All About My Mother
         Not One Less
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

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(5)

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(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2012

    a pretty good movie ! kinda sad n a way but also creepy 1..

    a pretty good movie !
    kinda sad n a way but also creepy 1..

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The film that introduced me to the one of my fave directors Gulliermo del Toro

    Not only that but it also introduced to me to different horror movies other than the usual American ones we seen a million times (no offense). Anyway this was a very good and suspenseful film and that ghost boy was creepy. Here we have a boy who is left at an orphanage and is haunted by a ghost and with help from his new friends they try to find out what happened. The ending was weird but still alright. Letting you know that it is sort of bloody so yeah watch with caution

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Best Movie Ever

    This is one of the best movies that i have ever seen. Absolutley bone chilling! I don't get scared watching movies very often, but this one really did it for me.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great! Just great!

    This is probably the best spanish horror movie I've ever seen. The story is great, with an unexpected twist at the end. The effects for Santi are extremely creepy.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews