Crimson Peak is a romantic-gothico-love-ghost-story that stuns on a visual level far more than it delivers on a story level. Overall, I enjoyed the experience despite a lackluster and predictable del Toro plot, where the bitchy mama-ghosts are (naturally) seeking to right some wrong they were dealt in life. With that cinema nerd stuff out of the way, we can begin to look at the esoteric aspects of the film, which are multitude. Much like Pan’s Labyrinth, del Toro and company have returned to packing their production with an effusion of esoteric and occult symbolism. While it’s not the best film of 2015, it does make the JaysAnalysis cut, and also features my fiery red-head crush, Jessica Chastain.
Set during the rise of the industrial barons at the turn of the century, liberal economic theory has morphed into its new form, that of finance capital and monopoly capital. Wealthy American businessman Carter Cushing has no love for the Ancien Regime of European Nobility, which will come to the fore as Baronet Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston) makes advanced towards his daughter, Edith (Mia Wasikowska). Edith, the saucy, rationalist, proto-feminist suffragette daughter Edith Cushing has lost her mother sometimes experiences spectral visitations at night warning her to “beware Crimson Peak.” Defiantly spouting her desire to pen novels and ghost stories after snidely sassing local visiting nobility, Cushing is less than pleased to see Edith begins to fall for Sharpe’s dark seduction. Daddy cock-block steps in to halt this affair and thus meets his demise.
Is it possible or even conceivable to have a ghost tale where the other worldly phantasms and shades aren’t hounding some traumatized, unsocial dork in this world, intent on righting that untimely demise? Is this the only thing ghosts are up to? I kid, but it is a plot that is played out. With Del Toro, the intention is to throw homage to horror classics like The Haunting, The Innocents, The Omen, The Exorcist and The Shining. Here, however, think Adam Smith versus Dr. John Dee, with a few ghosts milling about. If we think back to Pan’s Labyrinth, we recall that Del Toro certainly has a penchant for the occult, so in this case I am willing to say this is a film about trauma-based mind control.Now, you know JaysAnalysis tends to avoid that over-hyped trope in the realms of online conspiriana arcana, but it clearly seems to be the plot here, as we discover in Lady Lucille Sharpe’s (Jessica Chastain) exposition to Edith concerning the family history and dear old ma’s hatred and cruelty. In fact, the history of many of the nobility in Europe have operated this way as I understand, with the intention of ensuring their children are cold, calculated and predatory through a kind of abuse. This trauma, the reasoning goes, will result in the assurance of keeping the genetics within the bloodline (as they will only produce offspring with another, similar bloodline). This is why the red clay, or blood, is significant in the film. Allerdale Estate (more like Adderall Estate) is built on a clay mine where, during winter, the red mineral deposits in the clay seep up through the ground making the snow appear to be blood. The estate, a large house, represents many things, most evident of which is the old order of nobility and caste, as the Sharpe’s line dilapidates like their mansion. Del Toro appears to want us to connect the estate of the old line nobility as if it were built upon the sacrificial lambs and blood of the common man.
In fact, the truth is far more gruesome than that, as we discover the Sharpe scam is precisely to lure in unsuspecting wealthy women in foreign states, obtaining their wealth through marriage, and then poisoning, tormenting and murdering them, as the corpses are dumped into the mine deposits in the basement. As you will often see in horror narratives, the house is also an image of the person or the psyche, with the various rooms of the house representing compartments of the mind, and the basement the subconscious. Generally, it is the basement where the traumas are suppressed, repressed and stored, giving rise to the darkest, primal forces that perennial well-up, haunting the inhabitants in full Poltetrgeist fashion.Edith’s rationalism quickly dissipates as her mundane love interest Dr. Alan McMichael (Charlie Hunnam) explains to her privately he believes science is limiting in its methodology for only describing the natural world. Dr. Alan reveals that he thinks resonance imaging can capture the energetic leftover impressions of spirits that are associated with the crystal and elemental deposits in the land – blood and soil. The Rosemary’s Baby entrapment and poisoning scheme is gradually discovered by Edith, who now fears she cannot escape and fears Dr. Alan won’t reach her, only to stumble upon the darkest secret: Lady Lucille and Thomas are not only lovers, but incestuous lovers who actually are brother and sister. Lucille explains that she and her brother were terrorized by their wicked mother, leading to the development of an illicit affair between them and forbidden, retarded offspring. Sharpe, we learn, is trapped in his adolescent/childhood stage of development, where his engineering skills are lacking, falling back on constructing creepy children’s toys (the stereotypical dolls and clowns of horror lore). What is striking here is the similarity of this plot with the whispers and rumors of the actual bloodline elites, hearkening to reports of Jimmy Savile, British MPs, the Franklin Scandal and the Dutroux Affair. As time passes, and even mainstream news outlets are forced to admit, the establishment is infested with Satanic pedos that do inflict trauma-based conditioning on their victims. Indeed, Lady Lucille even shows Edith her secret porn collection, demonstrating the discarding of any norms and taboos. Having been traumatized as children, Thomas and Lucille developed psychopathy, but not merely psychopathy, a distinctly ritual psychopathy that consistently alludes to a social Darwinian human sacrifice philosophy, based on black magic and sorcery. Lady Lucille subtly hints to Edith in a form of gas lighting that she (Edith) is the butterfly, and Lucille the predatory black moth. This is why we see the moth and butterfly imagery in the film art, signifying both transformation and trauma-based mind control. As I said, I don’t generally go down this route in analysis because it’s so over-played, but I will also not ignore it when it is blatantly applicable, as the entire estate is filled with butterflies, dolls and moths. The reversed key insignia of “ENOLA” signifies “ALONE,” where letters arranged in reverse symbolize the energy and power behind Crimson Peak are the inverse of the good, the demonic. The family’s Latin motto is “To the hills we raise our eyes,” which appears to be Psalm 121. Here, the worship is not directed God-ward, but to the elemental forces of nature, the primal, earthen forces of animism and ceremonial magic. Lady Lucille explains this to Edith, noting that “ghosts are real; there are things that tie them to a place…the spilling of blood.” Ritual sacrifice is being offered to the forces of nature to attempt to ensure the success of the Sharpe Estate, where the keys and rooms of the estate will lock away the secrets of the Sharpe sacrifices, trapping the energy of the victims in both the house and the Sharpes’ psyches. The Sharpes are believers in that ole time religion, the ole time religion of Druidic human sacrifice. If we were to read this into reality, the “keys” to understanding the actual power structure could be that the bloodlines in our day still operate on this basis, traumatizing the prey public, while sacrificing them as cannon fodder to cite Kissinger, ensuring their own progeny extend into the future. Social Darwinism meets druidism, coalescing into a cabal committed to the dark side. While these may be true revelations of the occult elite, I have a criticism of this presentation concerning Del Toro’s persistent anti-nobility stance. While there have certainly been countless degenerate nobles, is it really the nobility and upper class in our day that are wreaking havoc? It’s not the nobility that have caused mass murders in the dozens of millions in the last century, but rather the banking elite and their secular, republican and Marxist children that they funded, who are the real bloodthirsty demagogues. Mao, with Rothschild and Rockefeller praise, killed far more people in the 20th century than any Euro Baron. Is it really landed nobility who are the enemies of mankind? Is it not rather the technocratic social engineers and billionaire banking oligarchs who funded and founded the proto-feminism Edith found to trendy and “empowering”? Is it not the banking elite who have continually bested kings and rulers through war debt and currency manipulation?