Pan's Labyrinth (2006) and the Use of Fantasy as an Alternative Interpreta-tion of the History of Spain under Franco's Regime

Fernando Varela, Carmen Canete Quesada


Following the death of Francisco Franco in 1975, Spain transitioned into a democratic form of government that exhibited a similar polarization that lead to the Civil War in that country in June 1936. An example of this division is the question of what to do with the memories of abuses committed by Franco from 1939 until his death. Guiller-mo del Toro explores this issue in his movie Pan’s Labyrinth (2006). The film tells the story of a young girl, Ofelia, who employs her imagination in order to envision a past without the oppressive Francoist step-father, Captain Vidal. This paper analyzes Del To-ro’s use of fantasy as a resource to showcase an alternative interpretation of the history of Spain that challenges and subverts in most of the cases Franco’s official version of the war.

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