This movie was really great. Strong characters, a powerful setting, but most of all the portrayal of the hidden fantasy world was great. It seems like all the monsters these days are 100% CGI, which just often feel disconnected and unreal beyond believability. A well-made puppet pulls it off much more effectively (note I say WELL-MADE, I'm not talking Power Rangers foam rubber villains). The faun's face, for instance, was very well made, seeming like it could be a real creature's face, yet disconcertingly different in shape from human faces. But the scariest of all was the creature guarding the feast underground with the eyes on its hands. *ugh* that one gives me the shivers. Damn that thing is creepy!
The Pale Man really disturbed me, too. Interesting note: Doug Jones, who played the Pale Man, also was Abe Sapien in Hellboy.
I had seen Hellboy before Pan's Labyrinth, and I distinctly remember having a double-take moment when I saw the Pale Man's hands- the movement was very very familiar. Doug Jones is so fluid, and fascinating to watch! It's rumoured that he will have a role in The Hobbit.
(Which Peter Jackson will direct, <squee!>)