Initial thoughts about Crimson Peak 1

It’s late and I’m tired, but I did get to see this movie today. I also definitely want to see it again, so I can properly take notes and pay attention to the details more this time around.

I think I’ve seen on Twitter, some back and forth over if Crimson Peak is a horror movie or not. It’s certainly not slasher movie jump scare city, thank goodness. I don’t like those sort of movies at all. But it’s maybe a few steps below something like It Follows, wrapped up in yards and yards of fabric, knives and ribbons into a sharp, unsettling confection.

The main character, Edith, really describes what Crimson Peak is when she’s talking about the fiction she’s written. It’s a ghost story, but the ghosts are a metaphor. It’s the monsters that are real, and grandly so. That’s where the movie takes its most gothic turn, at the monstrous and dark side of love, which is echoed perfectly by the set design. The grand old house rots from the inside out, with its most prominent decorations spikes in endless rows or gilded, all pointing inward.

It’s a gorgeous movie. Of course it’s gorgeous. Guillermo del Toro made it. But I think he’s outdone himself on this one. Between Jessica Chastain’s Herculean effort to not ever blink in the most disturbing way possible, Tom Hiddleston communicating hidden depths of humanity with a look in a character that could rightfully be just one hell of a creepy bastard, and Mia Wasikowska spending over an hour of screen time in terror-induced panic without ever losing my sympathy or getting on my nerves, the cast really knocked it out of the park.

There’s a lot more I’d like to say, but I’m tired and I have a headache, and I’d really like to see the film against first. You should go see it too.

One comment on “Initial thoughts about Crimson Peak

  1. Reply L.A. Julian Oct 19,2015 20:48

    And if they are a metaphor, what for, eh? That’s the question, and the map key is left to us to find as well. (The house, I think, is the British Empire, but not necessarily limited to that.)

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