A labyrinth is a prehistoric representation relating to wholeness. It unites the imagery of a circle and the spiral into an indirect and a purposeful path. It represents the journey to our own centre and into our world as well.
The movie “Pan’s Labyrinth” formerly called “El Laberinto del fauna” was acted in Spain. The movie’s theme describes how a young girl called Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) who believes that tales are true stories and exists in the real world. This agrees with Carl Jung (Man and his symbols) arguments that a man can achieve completeness only through a knowledge and approval of the unconscious which is a knowledge acquired through dreams and their symbols, he goes on to say that “every dream is a direct personal and meaningful communication that uses the symbols common to all mankind but uses them always in an entirely individual way, which can be interpreted only by an entirely individual ‘key’.
Ofelia moves with his mother Carmen (Ariadna Gil) who was by then expectant to Navarra northern part of Spain to stay with Captain Vidal (Sergi L?pez) a sadistic Fascist officer of Francisco Franco’s army who was to be her stepfather. Captain Vidal had the duty to clear all the leftist rebels who hiding in the forest after the end of the Civil War in Spain in 1994.
In the movie Ofelia and the pregnant mother as they were moving to stay with captain who was to be her stepfather, an insect appeared to Ofelia and the insect Fauna from monsters’ mouth followed them to Captain Vidal’s place which later lead her to an overgrown, tumbledown labyrinth behind the mill, this gives a metaphoric expression that it was the beginning of a new life. The mother’s pregnancy also symbolic expresses the coming of anew life. The fetus in the mothers womb symbolizes the life to come after struggle since the movie scene is based after the Civil Wars which may have claimed many lives in Spain and there was need for a new beginning.
The movie flows from real life situation to fictitious life where fictitious actions are encountered. The insect comes in with instructions to Ofelia, where it gives Ofelia an instructional book which only displays the instructions when Ofelia was alone and it appears black when she was with people; this symbolic explains that Ofelia was the tool to be used in bringing in the dawn of the new beginning since in them, the other stumbling blocks were other people who may block transition, these people are represented by Mercedes (Maribel Verdu) who was a housekeeper in Captain Vidal house and also had a brother among the rebels and also Captain Vidal’s doctor (Alex Angulo) who was also a supporter of the rebels. The curtain folded down and the rebirth is witnessed when Ofelia accomplishes all the difficult task she was instructed by Fauna to carry out showing the end of the humanitarian that was witnessed in the Civil war “her queenly mother, who resembles Ophelia’s mortal mother tells her to take her rightful place beside her father and that they’ve waited a long time for her return”.
The movie has many characters of which they had different symbolic parts to play in scene. Ofelia is the ego character and she acts as tool and a path to a new beginning where she is the one to carry out all the difficult tasks until the unfolding of the movie. She provides an opportunity for under developed and unknown characters to get some sound deserved disclosure. She had the task of completing three tasks to surely prove that she is the missing daughter before the rebirth; Ofelia has a duty to slay a huge and grotesque toad who resides inside a large void tree (which is slowly dying because of the toad inside) by getting three stones into its stomach. She then must get a key from the toad’s stomach which she does which was to signify the rebirth and the continuation and flow of the movie. Her second assignment was to repossess the object that was guarded by a dangerous being that fed on children and with eyes in his hands.
Ofelia’s third task is to present her baby brother to the labyrinth and her third task is to bring her baby brother to the labyrinth and this time she uses the enchanted chalk to penetrate Vidal’s room without being noticed and it is at this moment that she sneaks inside the room to get the baby and the rebels make their final attack.
Other characters ware the Captain Vidal who was to bring the difficulty in achieving the goal, Vidal doctor and Mercedes the housekeeper they were also to act as stumbling blocks in the achievement of the rebirth. Others like Fauna and the labyrinth welfare were the positive character that cartelizes the struggle for journey to the rebirth. The child that was born by Carmen was the symbol of treasure that was being battled upon between the positive and the negative animus.
Characters in the scene of the movie had different capacity action; there are those that played the major parts in the movie scene and those that took the shadow part of the characters in the scene and also those who take the animus part of the movie scene. The animus characters are to assist in folding the movie to another step.
They are of two types the negative and the positive animus. The negative animus characters are to act as the hindrance while the positive animus characters are to cartelize the flow of the movie scene.
Characters who take the major part of the scene of the movie are the egos in the scene. In this movie the ego was Ofelia. She helps Carmen, her mother to come to the movie’s limelight thereby providing her the opportunity to get known. She takes the major part of the scene, she appears in every part of the scene and she is the one all scene fold to when there is progress from one scene to another, in her absence the movie scene comes to an end without delivering the objective, that is the scene ends prematurely in the demise of the ego character. Ofelia as the ego, the movie scene could proceed from the unfolding of the curtains to the folding of the curtains. She took the part of achieving or emerging the successful winner. She also carried the entire difficult task in the scene.
There are also the shadow characters; these are the characters that help in nurturing or bringing up the ego character. They also take the major part in the scene but their part is overshadowed by the main character. In the above scene Carmen was the shadow character, she played a major part by bring the ego character to life and also with her, the ego character was able to move to another location which shifted the scene. With her also the other characters come into the scene but she plays her part a reference point.
There were also the animus characters, which are the positive characters and the negative characters. The negative character was Captain Vidal who was an hindrance blocking the achievements of the ego character he was blocking Ofelia from carrying out the instruction given to her for her to achieve her objective which was to be the princess. The positive animus was the Fauna who guided the ego to the achievement of his goal. He gave Ofelia instructions that would guide her to the achievement of her goals. He also motivated Ofelia when she was giving up since the task she was to attend to was very dangerous.
Self in the movie shows those character who does not depend on other characters or other symbols in the scene that symbolizes other actions or any object needed for the folding of the scene. Mercedes was a self character since she never depended on any character on her actions.
The three rocks and the golden key were very symbolic. The three rocks symbolize the difficult tasks that were to be carried out by Ofelia and the golden key was then to symbolize the achievement of her objectives. The huge frog that Ofelia was to kill was the stumbling or the hindrance objects to her achievement. Throwing of the three stones in the frog’s stomach was the carrying out the instruction given to her by Fauna to bring down the enemies.
Ofelia at one time failed to carry out the task she was given by Fauna and the mother’s life was about to be taken and she was not to achieve her goals, later she managed to carry the final difficult task that was given by Fauna to bring the baby to the shrine and this finally lead to the death of Vidal and the end of the life taking of innocent blood and the beginning of the new life.
For the movie flow from the folding to the unfolding of the scene there must be the major character or the ego in the movie scene, the shadow characters to help in building up the ego character during the folding of the scenes, and also the animus characters to help also in building of the play. Symbolic objects and action should also be used in scene to put a certain message in symbolic way that will require a deeper and also involve the audience mentally in interpreting or coming up with their meanings.