It’s the Booze Talkin’, Guillermo del Toro back to horror? We’re in!

Last Updated on August 2, 2021

In the 1980 classic ghost story THE CHANGELING, there is a sequence involving an old wheelchair that is pretty damn creepy.  One of the many moment that linger in my memory. This spectacularly spooky tale is a terrifically directed feature from Peter Medak, starring the legendary George C. Scott in the leading role. It is what you could call a classy horror movie. Of course, if you’ve never seen this terrifying film, you are missing out and should watch it right away. Why do I bring this particular movie up? Well it just so happens that it reminds me of an upcoming scary story that will be hitting theatres October 16th of this year. It is another ghostly tale with an impressive cast, directed by one of the most immensely talented filmmakers working today.

The trailer for CRIMSON PEAK is a lavishly put together couple of minutes. And really, you can’t do much better than Tom Hiddleston, Jessica Chastain, Mia Wasikowska and Charlie Hunnam starring in a fantastical horror thriller directed by the ferociously original Guillermo del Toro. And while it looks to have a heavy dose of CGI, there are very few filmmakers that could put the technology to as good of use as he can. Much like THE CHANGELING – although not nearly as old school – the use of sounds and set design seem to play a very important role in conjuring up frights. And some of the images on display are wickedly beautiful – love the blood drenched white snow.

As a fan of del Toro and his wonderfully imaginative worlds, it’s been a bit since we’ve seen him take a trip to the dark side as a director – aside from a couple of episodes of The Strain and a producer for others. Lately he is putting more time into nurturing talented new filmmakers as opposed to bringing his own invention to the screen. In 2013 we had PACIFIC RIM – and I dug the hell out of it. There was HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY back in 2008. That’s a long damn time! As much as I love when this visionary director takes on a new project as a producer, it is much more satisfying to see him in director mode – although I loved THE BOOK OF LIFE, which may be animated but it was loaded with death.

One of my favorite things about Guillermo del Toro is his love for genre. While PAN’S LABYRINTH is not necessarily horror, it certainly has some of the most frightening images ever. Aside from that amazing film, you have the genius of THE DEVIL’S BACKBONE from 2001 and CRONOS from 1993. Even with MIMIC – while not his best film – I found there to be some intriguing ideas. And personally, I do feel that the Director’s Cut improves slightly on the Theatrical Cut. Suffice it to say that I have more than just a simple appreciation for when del Toro explores ghosts, goblins and nightmare inducing images. So the fact that he is returning to the genre is something that makes me ecstatic.

Another aspect of this new film that I previously mentioned is the cast. As Mr. George C. Scott did with THE CHANGELING, the fine ensemble del Toro has collected for CRIMSON PEAK is a huge plus. Tom Hiddleston is perfection in the Marvel Universe as Loki, but he is also a damn fine actor outside of that world. It is nice to see him step into a different genre, especially one I hold so near and dear. As for Jessica Chastain, there are few actresses that I look forward to watching work than her. She is just marvelous. And then there is Mia Wasikowska. The actress took my breath away in STOKER, and her chemistry with Hiddleston appears to be extraordinary in this. As for Charlie Hunnam, I’m looking forward to seeing the actor step away from Jax and the Sons of Anarchy and hopefully this will be the film to do that.

Maybe it’s the Booze Talkin’, but Guillermo del Toro returning to horror is worth celebrating. With an excellent cast and a hauntingly atmospheric look, this could be just what we genre fans have been looking for. CRIMSON PEAK appears to be a smartly crafted and classic ghost story that will take our breathe away. Hiddleston and Wasikowska look fantastic together, and damn if that trailer doesn’t whet my appetite for a gorgeously told gothic romance I don’t know what could. Welcome back to horror del Toro! Perhaps, if this makes a little bit of money we will see the director finally take on some H.P. Lovecraft!

Source: AITH

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JimmyO is one of’s longest-tenured writers, with him reviewing movies and interviewing celebrities since 2007 as the site’s Los Angeles correspondent.