Movie Review: Crimson Peak (2015)

Synopsis: In 1901, Edith Cushing, a budding author with the ability to see ghosts, falls in love with a charming but poor English baronet, Thomas Sharpe, who has come to America seeking financing for his family's clay mine. After her father is murdered, Edith marries Thomas and moves into his rundown family estate with him and his sister, Lucille. When Edith encounters the spirit of their dead mother, notices other clues around the house and grows increasingly ill, she begins to suspect her relationship with Thomas isn't what she thought it was.

Who's in it? The movie stars Mia Wasikowska, Jessica Chastain, Tom Hiddleston, Jim Beaver and Charlie Hunnam.

Review: I had this movie as a "maybe" on my Netflix DVD list and was kind of surprised when I received it in the mail despite the fact there were quite a few movies ahead of it in my queue. While the movie sounded intriguing, I wasn't overly sure about it. And, as a result of that, I did have some doubts when my wife and I ended up watching it while eating lunch yesterday. As it turns out, however, it was actually an OK movie.

The thing I found I liked about this film is it had a bit of a mystery. From the moment they are introduced, Thomas (Hiddleston) and his sister, Lucille (Chastain), seemed a little off and it was apparent they were up to something. But, I wasn't sure if they were just after Edith's (Wasikowska) money or if there was something even more sinister behind their desire to bring her back to England with them.

One thing that really stood out for me was how graphic some of the scenes were. I'm not overly squeamish, so they didn't bother me too much and I wound up enjoying the film a little more because of them (they were just shocking enough to keep me awake). However, if you have a weak stomach, I would not recommend eating while watching this film.

Despite the movie being better than I was expecting, there were some things about it I didn't like. For one, I thought some of the background music was a little bland. It didn't make much of a difference when there was something exciting going on (such as her interaction with ghosts). But, during the slower scenes, it did make the film seem a little duller.

I was also a bit disappointed by the way the film wound up dumbing down Edith. This is a woman who we are told is intelligent and independent. Yet, it takes her almost to the end of the movie to figure out she is being played. At minimum, she should have been questioning her father's death. The authorities may have ruled it accidental (which was kind of ridiculous) but, after seeing how bashed in his head was, I really find it hard to believe she wouldn't have had some doubts about it. Basically, she was lucky she had some ghosts warning her or she'd probably wouldn't have survived.

Final Opinion: I wish the movie would have made Edith a little wiser than she wound up being. However, overall, I thought the film proved to be somewhat entertaining. The ghosts are kind of creepy and some of the scenes are just graphic enough to get you on the edge of your seat and, as a result of that, I would recommend it.

My Grade: B


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