'Cronos' is a good film for Del Torro fans who, like me, wanted to see where it all started.
Make no mistake, this film is not great at all and with getting on for 20 years having past, it does look and 'feel' a little dated. There are, however, early glimpses of the proceeding genius of Del Torro. There is some fairly mild horror, some black comedy, some touching bits and the odd moment of madness. (Think 'Pans Labyrinth' all those years later)
I'm suprised that this is labelled as a 'vampire' movie. Whilst there are hints that the lead character has vampyric instints, it certainly isn't a film based soley on the vampire theme. 'Cronos' is actually a strange mix of 'returning from the dead', fantasy and revenge.
On the contray, I loved the way the grandfather/grandaughter was portrayed and there are definitely hints of 'The Orphanage' by means of the cuteness of the kid and the interaction between them.
If 'Cronos' wasn't directed by Del Torro, I'd probably dismiss it as average at best. However, knowing what we know now, this film is worth a look, even though it might not be in the same league as some of his truly great subsequent work.