Guillermo del Toro is a beloved filmmaker for his devotion to horror, science fiction, and fantasy through his unique visual language. His distinct tone creates a world that is beautifully grotesque yet captivating, making him one of our favorite directors. 

The Mexican filmmaker has noted how art, the horror genre, and film noir have been inspirations behind his films, using American realism blended with film noir as the driving force behind his latest film, Nightmare Alley.  

As a gift for the upcoming year, del Toro took to Twitter this week to share his favorite books, films, and art, saying “you may find [these suggestions] cool to discover as the year is birthed.” We curated a list of all the works del Toro suggested for you to check out this new year.

You can read the full list del Toro posted on Twitter here

Serenade (James M Cain)

“This is lesser-known Cain but a really dark hardboiled story of passion, desire, and murder. There is a scene in a colonial church that is unbelievably visual and twisted.”

L’Arcano Incantatore (Pupi Avati)

“The Barry Lyndon of horror movies. Hard to get but worth it? Some of it is [on] YouTube but incomplete. Full of esoteric lore that is well-researched and authentic. A neglected masterpiece.”

The_departure_of_the_israelites_david_roberts_1829_-_1829'The Departure of the Israelites,' David RobertsCredit: Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery

David Roberts' art 

“Roberts toured Egypt in the early 1800s. His images go beyond the exoticism of the Orientalists and evoke a mystery and a cosmic scale.”

You Can’t Win (Jack Black) 

“[A] deep dive into the underbelly of America, William Burroughs loved this book—a chronicle of Purgatory.”

Other Men’s Women (William Wellman)

“A powerful pre-code film that depicts a toughing love triangle. Fluid, gorgeous camera work and an early Cagney appearance that you will savor.” 

Othermenswomen1931'Other Men's Women'Credit: Warner Bros.

The Decapitated Chicken and Other Stories (Horacio Quiroga) 

“Quiroga is one of the very best storytellers and you will never forget his otherworldly images and gut-punch endings. 'The Feather Pillow' and the title story are perfect examples of this.”

The Biologic Show (Al Columbia)

“I don't know much about Mr. Columbia (his output is not abundant and remains hard to find) but this only adds to the mystery of this odd creator—a mixture between Fleischer cartoons and David Lynch.”

Let us know your thoughts on any of these art pieces, books, or films in the comments below!

Source: Guillermo del Toro