In 1997, we saw a film called Mimic from a director called Guillermo Del Toro. Whilst it was a good watch, the director’s flair made us check out his first major film, Cronos, which was a lot better and if you speak Spanish or don’t mind subtitles, we suggest you give it a watch. His films have always raised our interest since and it is why we were off to see his latest, Crimson Peak.
Del Toro has made some great films, big budget blockbusters such as Blade 2; Hellboy & it’s sequel Hellboy 2: The Golden Army; Pacific Rim and returning to his original routes with The Devil’s Backbone & his Oscar-nominated Pan’s Labyrinth so we expected great things from Crimson Peak!
The story centres on an aspiring author Edith Cushing (played by Mia Wasikowska best known for playing Alice in Tim Burton’s adaptation of Alice in Wonderland). She has written a ghost story, partly inspired by a visit from her mother, after her death, in which she warns Edith to beware of Crimson Peak.
Edith’s book is continually rejected by publishers as it has no romance for she is a woman in the 19th century! Thomas Sharpe (none other than Loki from Thor and the Avengers, Tom Hiddleston) arrives one day and is looking for investment from Edith’s father, Carter Cushing (played by Jim Beaver) for a machine to extract clay from the ground. We best know Jim from his role as Bobby in the TV show Supernatural. During this time he sees Edith’s manuscript and declares to be a fan.
During his stay, having tried to get investment from 3 others elsewhere, Thomas’ plea for investment is rejected. However, he is now even closer to Edith and after taking her to a dance, he appears to have fallen for her. As their romance blossoms, Edith’s father becomes suspicious and hires Holly (Burn Gorman who we still know best for his role as Owen in Doctor Who spin off, Torchwood. Although if you are a Del Toro fan, you will also know him from his role in Pacific Rim) to find out more about the mysterious Thomas.
Holly finds that along with Thomas’ sister, Lucille (Jessica Chastain, last seen in The Martian) their mother was killed in very suspicious circumstances. Carter pays off Thomas to never see his daughter again. However after accepting the pay off he does not leave, declaring his feelings are too strong for Edith and asks for her hand in marriage.
During this time, Carter is killed in horrific circumstances causing suspicion from Dr. Alan McMichael (played by Charlie Hunnam, again from Del Toro’s Pacific Rim although best known for his role in TV’s Sons of Anarchy).
Edith, having married Thomas and moved in with Lucille, is once again visited by her mother warning of Crimson Peak.
It is here that the movie (which in all honestly, we felt was a very slow opening), picks up a gear, but none more so than the arrival of a Papillon dog, whose breed is very much like a long haired Chihuahua! Luckily for me, BMAF’s Pepper the Chihuahua, who being under 15 years of age, (the rating age to see this film) wasn’t with me, as I now spent the rest of the film fearing for this poor pup!
Had I seen the dog in the trailer, I would have visited https://www.doesthedogdie.com/ for sure!
During an exchange from Thomas about the poor condition of their home, we find that the red clay rises from beneath the ground into the home. Worse still, when snowing, the clay combines with the snow turning it red, giving the home the name of, yep, you guessed it, Crimson Peak!
As we learn more of the past of Thomas and Lucille, it would appear they are really only after the money left to Edith following Carter’s death.
Using her drinks, they are slowly using poison to kill Edith. During this time, more ghosts from the previous victims of Thomas and Lucille are warning her of her future fate. Edith quickly must make plans to escape.
A thrilling end to the movie sees Lucille move up her plan to kill Edith as posion just isn’t quick enough!
Will Edith escape? Does Thomas actually have feelings for her? Will the Doctor save the day? We will let you visit Crimson Peak to find out.
Luckily, the trailers we had seen for this film had not given too much away other than maybe make you think Crimson Peak was a horror story, with the reality being it’s more a gothic love story.
Overall, we felt this film could have been shorter, but it was worth our time overall we feel. Once again showcasing Del Toro as a great director, although we just wish the Papillon wasn’t in the film.
What did you think of Crimson Peak? What is your favourite Del Toro film? Given Del Toro has made in our opinion, 2 good sequels in Hellboy and Blade, would you like to see another visit to Crimson Peak? We at BMAF would love to hear from you.
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