Stars: Mia Wasikowska / Jessica Chastain / Tom Hiddleston /
Release Date: 2015-10-13
Production Companies: Legendary Pictures,
Director: Guillermo del Toro, Dug Rotstein,
Crimson Peak Summary
In the aftermath of a family tragedy, an aspiring author is torn between love for her childhood friend and the temptation of a mysterious outsider. Trying to escape the ghosts of her past, she is swept away to a house that breathes, bleeds… and remembers.
Crimson Peak is an effort to make a throwback movie with modern effects and modern sex scenes, but it can't contend with the modern gaze with which we're looking at it.
Del Toro builds a tight plot but never develops it; his frames are overdecorated with macabre clutter and smothered in shadow, but the atmosphere of dread never reaches ecstatic excesses.
All the carefully orchestrated color schemes and all the dark corridors and secret chambers and all the flowing red metaphors in the world can't accelerate the slow patches, or make us care about lead characters.
The real wonder is the sumptuous production design by Thomas E. Sanders, whose darkly colorful sets were inspired by Stanley Kubrick's The Shining.
Del Toro just goes for effect, and the effect he seems to be going for here is something like, "Ew, Guillermo, that's really gross."