Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Crimson Peak

(2015)****

Edith Cushing is a beautiful young girl who has little interest in men as she is too busy working hard to become a writer. She ignores the attentions of the handsome Dr. Alan McMichaels but is suddenly swept off her feet by a Mr. Thomas Sharpe who comes to town to do some dealings with her wealthy father. Mr. Sharpe is trying to receive funding for a mining machine he has invented. Edith's father dies due to an unfortunate accident which we know was no accident but she is not privy to such information. In her grief, she falls hard into the arms of Thomas Sharpe and marries him. He whisks her off to his very large, very rundown and creepy old family home where he and his stoic sister Lucille reside. Edith, no stranger to seeing ghosts since she had an encounter with her mother's spirit when she was a young girl, begins seeing a creepy red apparition taunting her. Between the ghosts and the feeling that Lucille doesn't like her very much Edith just want out of the place but she has nowhere to go. Meanwhile back home Dr. McMichaels is not entirely convinced that Edith's father's death was an accident so he starts digging into it. Edith is caught in the center of an elaborate scheme of secrets and lies and at this point we can only hope she will make it out alive.


Crimson Peak is a slow burner with a thick and elaborate plot. I so love a ghost story in a gothic setting, it seems the perfect period for such things what with all those big creepy mansions and proper English accents and all. The ghosts are not overpowering, we aren't talking about a million pop ups and cgi scares here, they appear subtly and only add to the already tense situation that our heroine is facing. This is not the kind of film you go into expecting non stop action, slamming shutters and ghosts stealing every scene. The acting is well done, the characters complex and the setting is every bit a star in it's own rite. Once Edith moves to Thomas' home the film takes on a dark and desolate feeling much like the Woman in Black. It is great to see this style of film coming back, imagine that, films that rely on good acting and intricate plots rather than special effects. There may be hope for us yet.

4 comments:

JPX said...

The reviews I read on this suggest that the trailer is really a bait and switch with this being more of a love story than a ghost story. I struggle with movies set in this time period but I imagine that the cinematography is top-notch. Excellent review!

Johnny Sweatpants said...

I wanted to squeeze this one in but I don't think I'll have time at this point. Glad to hear it's decent though!

AC said...

Sounds excellent but won't get to this one... Have the lineup for the rest of the 'thon all set.

Octopunk said...

I also thought about this one but didn't get to the theater even once this year. Ah well. Nicely summed up, Cat. The better horror movies are the ones with good characters. Well, mostly.