If you like being scared, Crimson Peak, a modern day gothic tale, is for you. The sets, costumes, and acting all make for an eerie evening a la popcorn. Mia Wasikowski is stunning as the heroine. Her vulnerability makes you want to protect her from the evil ways of Tom Hiddleston and Jessica Chastain who rips the screen with her hold on terror. Lush, period romantic opulence create Crimson Peak's intrigue. Chastain (The Help, The Martian) as Lucille Sharpe is barely recognizable with her brunette locks which she wears well. Red hair has been her signature, but in this film she is a brunette monster much as Mrs. Danvers in Hitchcock's Rebecca., but with her signature beauty Mrs. Danvers lacked. Chastain's steely demeanor carries this film. Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy¸Pacific Rim) as Dr. Alan Michaels is always an appealing persona on screen and here his charm is of utmost importance.
Wasikowska (Alice in Wonderland, Madame Bovary) plays an aspiring writer, Edith Cushing, who sees ghosts as a metaphor, and falls in love with a dashing and sinister Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston-the Avengers, Thor). Thomas has all the right moves as a player after Edith's mega wealth while his sister, Lucille, shows a bit of the love of gore in her every phrase. They are quite the pair. Hold on tight for the ending as in all good horror any illusion to it will deflate the goosebumps one so looks forward to in a gothic horror spectacle such as this.
The sets and period costumes are sublime and all add to the sense of impending doom which the cinematography and lighting achieve while in sync with the great sound track. Edgar Allen Poe would have enjoyed Crimson Peak. Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim, Hellboy) directs this spooky fantasy with a deft hand. He wrote this dandy with the assistance of Matthew Robbins.
To say that the mansion that Edith and Thomas move into after being married is haunted is an understatement. The snow turns blood red. I wonder why? See Crimson Peak and find out. But do not go alone. You will want an elbow to bang in those 'yikes' moments or an ear to whisper into as what is happening next. But above all you will not want to be alone as this film is truly terrifying. See Crimson Peak if you like horror with your peanuts for a Halloween treat.