Rafael Jovine’s review published on Letterboxd:
If I were to judge this movie solely based on its cinematography, production design, music and sheer of pure creativity displayed on screen, this movie would easily get 10/10. Guillermo has always shown an eye for coming up with creative and spectacular monster designs and is able to oooze his movies with such a style that draws from many others, yet at the same time, he can call it his own.
After doing some research, I found that this was pitched as a hybrid of The Haunting and The Innocents, and this is very clear from the beginning. The movie begins with a haunting song sung by a young girl and the melody is very reminiscent of "O Willow Waly". There are also many themes like sexual repression, something that also The Haunting had, especially how many of these repressions come through in these monsters and ghoulish figures. There are so many influences on this film that anyone could lazily call it a ripoff, but at least to me because of the unique monsters and its much darker, gothic approach, it feels more like a riff rather than a copy.
Everyone here played off the melodrama and soapy tone of the film really well, going a bit overboard with their performances in a way that sometimes -especially Jessica Chastain- made me laugh at how they hammered some of the scenery.
However, I wasn't able to really connect with the story and I felt like they revealed the big twist too early, removing a lot of the mystery and making the ride feel like a wait rather than a thrilling ride.
All in all, this is a soapy drama with lots to enjoy, but is sadly let down by its predictable plot, but I still encourage you to watch just to be mesmerized by the stunning technical work.
Lady In The Water