Matteo Garrone’s Pinocchio is a visually stunning adaptation of the classic children’s fairytale by Carlo Collodi. The film features beautiful location shooting, exquisite set design, and enchanting characters. All of the elements come together to paint a cinematic fresco worthy of a fine-art gallery.
Shooting in the Land
One of the immediate things you will notice about Pinocchio is the variety of landscapes and locations. A good chunk of the scenes takes place outdoors in real locations across Italy. It brings a level of realism to the fantasy element of the story. Simply enough, the outdoor shooting also adds a beautiful and natural backdrop to the entire film. The real-life landscapes serve as the canvas to the fairytale painting.
Pinocchio also features a fantastic set design. The practical sets blend well with the on-location elements of the film. The designs have an old antique quality to them while also serving as period pieces. For example, interior buildings feature highly worn down and dirty chateau-style furnishings. It all creates a design language of opposites; rich chateau-style furnishing and architecture, but extremely shabby in appearance. We see the same design elements in Star Wars, which features worn-in/run-down futuristic technology.
The characters of Pinocchio serve as the final element of the film’s artistry. Their appearances complement the design language we talked about earlier. For example, some characters are fully stylized humanistic animals, such as a tuna with a human face, while others appear more human than animal. It adds to the design language of the film by contrasting extreme fantasy elements with more human-like visual features. Overall, those aspects blend well together and give the film a play-like quality with each of the characters. In this version of the story, fantasy and the real world collide.
Ultimately, Matteo Garrone’s version of Pinocchio delivers one of the most visually beautiful adaptions of the classic story ever made.