172 user 74 critic

The Keep (1983)

2:29 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Nazis are forced to turn to a Jewish historian for help in battling the ancient demon they have inadvertently freed from its prison.



(novel), (screenplay)
1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Thief (1981)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Becoming closer to his dream of leading a normal life, a professional safecracker agrees to do a job for the mafia, who have other plans for him.

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: James Caan, Tuesday Weld, Willie Nelson
L.A. Takedown (TV Movie 1989)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Tough Los Angeles cop Vincent Hanna takes on a gang of professional bank robbers led by the precise, enigmatic Patrick McLaren.

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: Scott Plank, Alex McArthur, Michael Rooker
Manhunter (1986)
Crime | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Former FBI profiler Will Graham returns to service to pursue a deranged serial murderer named "the Tooth Fairy" by the media.

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: William Petersen, Kim Greist, Joan Allen
Miami Vice (2006)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Based on the 1980s TV action/drama, this update focuses on vice detectives Crockett and Tubbs as their respective personal and professional lives become dangerously intertwined.

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: Colin Farrell, Jamie Foxx, Li Gong
The Jericho Mile (TV Movie 1979)
Crime | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Rain Murphy is a man sentenced to life in prison, choosing to do his time in near-isolation, and engages in distance running when given the opportunity for free-time. While his form and ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: Peter Strauss, Richard Lawson, Roger E. Mosley
Near Dark (1987)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A small-town farmer's son reluctantly joins a traveling group of vampires after he is turned by a beautiful drifter.

Director: Kathryn Bigelow
Stars: Adrian Pasdar, Jenny Wright, Lance Henriksen
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A fearless Secret Service agent will stop at nothing to bring down the counterfeiter who killed his partner.

Director: William Friedkin
Stars: William Petersen, Willem Dafoe, John Pankow
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A research team finds a mysterious cylinder in a deserted church. If opened, it could mean the end of the world.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Lisa Blount, Jameson Parker
Scanners (1981)
Action | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A scientist sends a man with extraordinary psychic powers to hunt others like him.

Director: David Cronenberg
Stars: Jennifer O'Neill, Stephen Lack, Patrick McGoohan
Wolfen (1981)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A New York cop investigates a series of brutal deaths that resemble animal attacks.

Director: Michael Wadleigh
Stars: Albert Finney, Diane Venora, Edward James Olmos
From Beyond (1986)
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A group of scientists have developed the Resonator, a machine which allows whoever is within range to see beyond normal perceptible reality. But when the experiment succeeds, they are immediately attacked by terrible life forms.

Director: Stuart Gordon
Stars: Jeffrey Combs, Barbara Crampton, Ted Sorel
Enzo Ferrari (2018)
Biography | Drama

The life story of Italian sports car entrepreneur, Enzo Ferrari.

Director: Michael Mann


Cast overview, first billed only:
Eva Cuza
Father Fonescu
Alexandru (as Morgan Sheppard)
Royston Tickner ...
Radu Molasar
Phillip Joseph ...
John Vine ...
Jona Jones ...
Wolf Kahler ...
S.S. Adjutant
Rosalie Crutchley ...
Border Guard 1


Nazis are sent to guard an old, mysterious fortress in a Romanian pass. One of them mistakenly releases an unknown force trapped within the walls. A mysterious stranger senses this from his home in Greece and travels to the keep to vanquish the force. As soldiers are killed, a Jewish man and his daughter (who are both knowledgeable of the keep) are brought in to find out what is happening. Written by Brian House

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THEY WERE ALL DRAWN TO THE KEEP. The soldiers who brought death. The father and daughter fighting for life. The people who have always feared it. And the one man who knows its secret... THE KEEP Tonight, they will all face the evil.




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

16 December 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Satans borg  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$6,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (video)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The name of the demon character was "Radu Molasar" but it is also known simply in abbreviated form as just "Molasar". The monster was conceptualized by French comics artist Enki Bilal. See more »


The Einsatzkommondos of the SS always wore field grey Waffen-SS uniforms, not the black parade jacket with swastika armband as depicted in the film. See more »


[first lines]
Captain Klaus Woermann: [to a soldier, looking at the Keep] Your new home. How do you like it ?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Keep Production Pays Tribute To Wally Veevers See more »


References Faust (1926) See more »


(from the Mass for Four Voices by Thomas Tallis)
Arranged by Tangerine Dream
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

More than the sum of its parts
14 September 2004 | by (Dallas, TX) – See all my reviews

Possibly this isn't Michael Mann's best - or even next to next to best

  • movie, but I make no apologies for liking it quite a lot. In fact, my

chief complaint about this movie is that it has never been released on DVD so that the full texture and sense of this piece could be better experienced and appreciated. It is a travesty with all the tripe that leaps from the undergrossing screen to overblown DVD these days, that no studio has had the stones to release THE KEEP on DVD.

In a weird, connect the dots fashion, I consider this film to be a critical milestone in Mann's directorial evolution. In and of itself, this makes the film entirely watchable, if not "important". The movie should be indispensable to Mann's devotees, and I find it surprising that it is not. As much as Manhunter (one of my all time favorites) and Heat (right up there with them) are ranked by most as very good films, THE KEEP, if for no other reason than its novelty should be accorded more respect than it gets.

Read the other reviews here and you can more or less understand the story line. The salient facts are there. I differ on several points, however.

First, I don't consider THE KEEP to be a 'horror movie' or even sci-fi, although it certainly has elements of both. I have no recollection of how the film was billed when it opened in '83 (in fact, I didn't see it until it appeared on Showtime, significantly later), but if you are looking for a 'horror' or 'sci-fi' flick, THE KEEP will leave you short. It is more of a 'thriller' if you had to pigeon-hole it, but even that doesn't really work, and this is what I think what confuses many who have seen and subsequently slammed this movie. To those who want a nifty tight film with all the proper cinematic and artistic "T"s crossed and "I"s dotted, you won't find it here and you will be eternally frustrated. What you will find is a unique, visionary realization of an essentially often told story of conflict between ultimate good and ultimate evil, spun in an arguably overly symbolic context.

Second, much apparently has been said about the lameness of the sets and special effects and accents and soundtrack and costumes, etc etc. I can't ever know for sure, but I don't think that Mann, with all his individual sense of style (remember, his visions and realizations virtually defined a substantial part of the 80s -- whether you liked them or not) was all that concerned about the impact of the trappings, but more on what they allowed the story to play against. The interplay of color (or lack thereof), background, character and music all create an enjoyable tapestry, best viewed from several feet away. If you get hung up on the minutae of this film, you've lost the message. In my personal opinion, this isn't a movie that should be watched critically
  • because it will fail in many ways, as others have already observed.

Rather, you should suspend not only your disbelief but your pretentiousness and just let the movie sort of flow around you. It's a bit like drift diving in Cozumel - the warm current moves you along to the degree that details can get lost and fuzzy, but you eventually realize that's what makes the experience different and wonderful.

The music certainly isn't appropriate to the period (1941 Nazi-occupied Romania) but then this isn't a period piece. Quite the contrary, the Tangerine Dream soundtrack adds to the gauzy, dreamlike quality which to me is what makes this movie so compelling and different. The acting isn't the best and in places, yes, the audio is pretty bad, but when considered as a whole, I believe the movie succeeds. My VHS copy of THE KEEP is now getting threadworn from overplay and I hope that someone, somewhere, will bring it out on DVD.

A strong 8 out of 10.

86 of 111 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What if they fixed the music? jloehrlein
UK fans - showing on Film4 soon (December 2012) Speednik Abreaction
Mann needs to emulate Friedkin to get The Keep released Bunuel_Fassbinder_Pasolini
Widescreen version of THE KEEP is no longer streaming on Netflix.. :( Zbranek001
this movie is easily Top 10 Best Movies of ALL time...... user-971-989764
Worst Sound Mix in the History of the Cinema MiBellaDi
Discuss The Keep (1983) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: