Tobias Nilsson’s review published on Letterboxd:
The ghost story writing daughter of a nouveau riche business man falls for an English nobleman, who has fallen on hard times. Her father doesn't approve, but when he dies there is nothing holding her from her beloved.
She moves in with her new husband and his sister, who live alone in the crumbling family estate, but before long, she finds that they may not be quite as alone in the house, as first expected.
A lot of critique has been given to this film, saying how it isn't really scary, and how it isn't really a horror movie, even though Guillermo del Toro is behind it.
Well, honestly, Guillermo del Toro hasn't been a horror director since, I can't remember when, so it shouldn't be that surprising to anyone. I've always said that he's not so much a horror director, but a director of the weird. He excels in dark fantasy, and what he's created here is a classic gothic ghost story, a genre which has often leaned more on the drama than the horrific.
And as a gothic ghost story, this hits home perfectly!
We've got an astoundingly brilliant setting with the Allerdale Hall mansion, or Crimson Peak as it known locally, and the three way drama unfolding between Edith, our protagonist, and the two siblings is classic story telling.
No, this will not frighten anyone, unless you're completely unfamiliar with the genre, and even then only in a few, select scenes. Ghosts aren't the scary part here anyway, it is the horror of humankind that is on full display.
I wasn't surprised to see that Danish Dan Laustsen was behind the camera of this film (he later worked with GdT on The Shape of Water, for which he received an Oscar nomination), because Crimson Peak is so beautifully shot, it nearly hurts!
When you talk about films in which every frame is an artwork in and of itself, this film should definitely be mentioned.
Crimson Peak also has a strong cast nearly all the way through. Mia Wasikowska (Stoker, Alice in Wonderland) fits the role as Edith like a hand in glove, and is a lovely lead for our story.
Likewise Jessica Chastain and Tom Hidddleston knocks it out of the park as the sibling noblefolk.
The only one who couldn't sell it to me was Charlie Hunnam as Edith's friend, Dr. Alan McMichael. He works as the rugged bad boy in Sons of Anarchy, but as a 19th century gentry? No, can't see it, not at all.
Special props to GdT for bringing in his staple actor Doug Jones as Edith's mother (didn't see that coming!), and Burn Gorman is spot on as the seedy investigator Holly.
I absolutely enjoyed this film, and I'm wobbling between a four and a four and a half rating. Either way, ratings aren't important, but the quality of the film is, and it is great.