“Crimson Peak” Movie Review



This movie was full of surprises and suspense.

Jesten Richardson, Assistant Editor

“Crimson Peak”. The name was enough to draw me in. I begged for perhaps a solid week to be able to go see this movie that was rated R: a step above my step-dad’s cutoff PG-13. I watched trailers until my eyes were stained the color of the title. My pulse jumped at the fact that Tom Hiddleston, the man that dominated the role of Loki in the Thor and Avenger movies, was to fill one of the starring roles of “Crimson Peak”, while the equally talented Mia Wasikowska, whom won me over as Alice in Tim Burton’s version of a beloved tale, costarred alongside him. What I didn’t realize is that I was in for an even larger treat than I had anticipated.
“Crimson Peak” is the story of a girl in her early twenties, named Edith (Wasikowska), whom is working extremely hard to be the next top author. Unfortunately for Edith, but fortunately for the plot of the story, she’s living in a Victorian era where the few female authors that are really having any success are writing sappy romances with a female audience in mind. Edith wants to go beyond the sappy and write a story that actually means something, but no man besides her father really seems to appreciate her hard work. Then comes Sir Thomas Sharpe (Hiddleston), a baronet from England that seeks to gain the favor of said father in supporting his previously unsuccessful business ventures, but whom seems to gain Edith’s favor instead. Thomas is charming, handsome and as unreserved in telling her of the excellence that he finds in her writing as she is in falling for him. The chemistry is undeniable between the pair, but complications arise frequently, and it becomes painstakingly clear that Edith’s happily ever after isn’t just that. There is something dark in Thomas’s past and something dark in his home: Crimson Peak.
The idea of the movie was intense in itself, but the acting made my heart race and ache (in a good way). Hiddleston and Wasikowksa were stunning in their roles, and so was Jessica Chastain. I had never seen Chastain in anything else, but her performance in Crimson Peak was enough to make me want to break into the room where they store the Oscars and Emmys and secure her a few. Really every actor in this movie was spot-on in his or her role, which definitely brought the intensity up a few notches.
Imagery was a major support for the intensity in this movie as well, with all the dark and bright hues artfully, meaningfully placed. The movies namesake red was certainly displayed in skillful ways: bleeding up through the fresh snow, billowing like smoke off of mysterious/terrifying specters, foreshadowing evils to come in subtle ways, and the list goes on. Color wasn’t the only trick in the “Crimson Peak” arsenal, but I’ll restrain myself so that you can make some of your own discoveries, and so that I have time to praise the man behind the awesomeness. Director Guillermo del Toro showcased the talent for horror writing/directing that he is known for, while effectively capturing the essence of a time period and the essence of humanity itself.
I could keep going on forever about this movie, so I will stop myself here. My final reflection on “Crimson Peak” would have to be this: it is a meaningful masterpiece that excites the mind, yet one that could disrupt the heart of someone that cannot handle extreme elements of horror, violence and suspense or one mild sexual scene that some may not approve of.