Its not so much a ghost story, but a story with a ghost in it, words uttered by Edith Cushing (played by Mia Wasikowska) these words didn’t seem to mean much when she said them at the beginning of the film, but as the credits started to roll, it was then i realized she described the plot in just a few simple words.
Set around the turn of the 20th century, Sir Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston) and his sister Lady Lucille Sharpe (Jessica Chastain) have traveled to america to seek investment in their mining invention. But whist they are unlucky in their efforts, it turns out Thomas is lucky in love as he and Edith fall for each other.
Tragedy strikes when Edith’s father suddenly passes away, with no one to turn to Edith and Thomas are soon married and set off for the brother and sisters decaying old family home in England. This is where the film finally finds its pace. The first half is a slow build for the bloody and gruesome turn of events that are to follow (seriously if you are squeamish then you may miss most of the finale from covering your eyes).
All is not as it seems for the brother and sister duo as the plan to get Edith’s family fortune by any means necessary, little did the except that she would have warnings of the paranormal kind. Do not let the trailer (see below) fool you, this is not a haunting story, the ghost and ghouls are few are far between, whilst they do provide some tense moments and typical jump scares, they actually add very little to the plot.
What we have here is actually a murder mystery/romance story with the paranormal added to give this film extra layers. The plot is solid and has some interesting turns, but the slow pace may not be for everyone. But rather than feeling like a stand alone film, the constant fade to black scenes make this feel like it could have been a TV series with a dramatic ending (here’s predicting a series on Netflix in the future)
Having said that the characters are solid and well portrayed which makes them very believable, we only scratch the surface of the pain and suffering this duo has caused, which would be very interesting to explore (Netflix, 2017, just saying). As visually stunning this film is and as good as the cast are, it by no means makes up for the misleading plot, the massive plot holes and the fact it has to rely on graphic shock value to redeem its self.
Had this not been released just before Halloween, with the promise of being a supernatural horror it may have flopped, but whilst it may not have been a box office smash it has done well enough to justify other options (i don’t see the original cast coming back to explore these options though).
So i award this film 2.5/5 stars (Casper’s Cameo couldn’t save this one)
Let me know your thoughts on this one, did you love it? (the ladies may only like this one for Tom Hiddleston’s bare bottom) or did you hate it?
Either way let me know your thoughts on here, Twitter @CongertonLee or on the facebook page Film and TV nerd (link below)
Thanks always for reading!