I honestly didn't care for Crimson Peak much. It's definitely a big disappointment. It's not necessarily an awful or even all that bad film, it is pretty and it is wonderfully acted, but there's nothing to it and I couldn't find myself invested in it. It also felt inconsistent, unsure whether it wanted to be a creepy ghost story, a Gothic romance, or a melodrama and it didn't find a way to do all 3 (Which is easily possible) nor did it do any individual piece particularly well.
I just got back from watching it with a friend, and I gotta say, this is exactly how I felt about it too.
Except for the wonderful acting part. Don't get me wrong, I don't think the actors were bad. I think the main problem I had was that the characters they played were so...dull. Especially Edith, who we're supposed to root for. And if a character has no character, it doesn't matter how good an actor acts it out if there's nothing to act out.
That's the other problem I had with the acting. I felt no chemistry between the actors. I could see that they acted, but...I couldn't feel it. Even if it was genuine, because the characters were so flat and uninteresting, the effort was lost on me.
The ghosts get a total of, like, 6 minutes of screentime between them, if even that, in the 119 minute long movie and almost all of them appear in the form of jump startles. Fuck you, film makers, a horror movie is supposed to scare me, not just make me jump a little and then forget about it in five seconds. The only two scenes where I felt the urge to look away was not because of "I'm scared" discomfort, but because of "Eeew, gross!" discomfort, which I don't want to feel unless I'm watching a splatter movie or something similar.
I wish the film makers had spent more time on the atmosphere they had; The mansion had such potential to make my skin crawl. But it didn't. It was pretty to look at and somewhat creepy, sure, but I feel they could've done more with it. And done more with the ghosts, maybe. There's a part where they talk about ghosts appearing in certain kinds of photos...and then it's never mentioned again. I think they were talking about ghosts being bound to a certain place while watching the photos, but I still think more could've been done with the photos.
Overall, I felt like something was missing. Note sure what, but something.
I'm not a movie person, granted. But I went into this movie with, albeit no high expectations, at least with a somewhat open mind and I still left the theatre feeling disappointed. I felt no chills, I felt no connection to the characters...Actually, I felt almost nothing throughout the movie, and for a supposed horror movie, or any movie for that matter, that is not good.
Would I say the movie is awful? Nah, I've seen worse. But I've also seen much, much better. 3½ stars? Sorry, Marter, but I disagree. 2 stars at most from me. I'm sorry, but this movie didn't work for me; It just made me react afterwards with a resounding "Meh.".