According to The Hollywood Reporter, the 52-year-old director has said that he sees Trump-era America as a "Cancer".
He said, "It's like a cancer. We have a tumor now. That doesn't mean the cancer started with that tumor. It was gestating for so long."
The Mexican director told a Toronto International Film Festival press conference.
What was wrong during the Cold War, Del Toro maintains, remains wrong today.
"The idea of the movie is to say, 1962 is the time that Americans go back in their imagination, when they say let's 'Make America Great Again,'" noted del Toro.
The filmmaker recalls in his movie a romanticised 1960s America where men drove jet-fin cars, women were "well-coiffed" and homes were built for convenience.
"If you were white, Anglo-Saxon and Protestant, it's was a great time to be alive. If you were not, if you were anything else, it was not," he said.
The Trump presidency may have surprised many, but not del Toro and fellow Mexicans attempting to make new lives in the U.S., he explained.
He shared, "I've seen, for most people, this thing started two years ago. But if you're Mexican, and you crossed the border, they never really went away. They've been latent all this time."