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Cowards Bend the Knee or The Blue Hands (2003)

7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 873 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 9 user | 31 critic | 10 from Metacritic.com

It's time for hockey! There's no telling what will happen when the Winnipeg Maroons' own star player Guy becomes embroiled in the twisted lives of Meta, a vengeful Chinoise, and her ... See full summary »

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Title: Cowards Bend the Knee or The Blue Hands (2003)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Melissa Dionisio ...
...
Veronica
Tara Birtwhistle ...
Liliom
Louis Negin ...
Mike Bell ...
Mo Mott
David Stuart Evans ...
Shaky
Henry Mogatas ...
Chas
Victor Cowie ...
Herdis Maddin ...
Grandma
Marion Martin ...
Mrs. Maddin
Aurum McBride ...
Baby
Bernard Lesk ...
Stickboy
Erin Hershberg ...
Customer / Stylist
Erika Rintoul ...
Customer
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Storyline

It's time for hockey! There's no telling what will happen when the Winnipeg Maroons' own star player Guy becomes embroiled in the twisted lives of Meta, a vengeful Chinoise, and her hairdresser/abortionist mother Liliom. Innocent Veronica, caught in the middle, is treated to both services! Meanwhile poor, dithering, cowardly Guy can only stand by and watch. Written by Anony-Moose

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 December 2004 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Et les lâches s'agenouillent...  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$7,030 (USA) (13 August 2004)

Gross:

$22,940 (USA) (20 August 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Alice Krige was Maddin's first choice to play Liliom, but was unable to appear in the film due to an illness. See more »

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User Reviews

 
a film loaded with libido and hyper-consciousness, a hallucination of abortions, murder and hockey
29 December 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It's not in Guy Maddin to make what Hollywood people would call a "normal" movie. Armed with 8mm cameras, loads of lights, sound effects (if not actual sound equipment), and a mind like a steel Dziga-Vertov trap marinated in Winnipeg and sex and murder, he makes movies the way he damn well pleases to do them, which usually are done like super-kinetic, libido-charged fever dreams that come to represent a kind of consciousness that could be misconstrued as a music video if not for the fact that it's a 1920's silent film about revenge-plotting women and blue hands ala Evil Dead that kill innocent victims while hockey is always a major subject (and, sometimes, with players in full wax museum mold).

It might not always make sense- and by this I mean relatively to some of Maddin's best and strangest like Brand Upon the Brain! and The Saddestmusic in the World- but it's never less than boring and always more than enough for the open-minded. And by this I mean open-minded enough to find oneself in the horror-movie world of a hockey player named Guy Maddin (yeah, not the first time and wont be the last the director has a character named by himself), who goes through a psycho-sexual-homicidal journey through a pair of blue hands which belong to a devious girl's father. They aren't actually his hands put on his, however, they're just painted blue. But there's an effect that comes with this: the hands kill ala Evil Dead without Maddin really wanting to. So come a series of events involving wax-painted hockey players who can come to life, an abortionist that works out of a beauty parlor, another woman who cant stand how Maddin waxes her legs, and, yes, plenty of frenetic Canadian Hockey.

That's what it's aboot, so to speak, but there's more, much more, particularly in Maddin's 10-chapter set-up, and featuring Beethoven's 7th among other classical selections (frankly I enjoyed the 7th in Saddest Music more, but this is even crazier, which helps). Everything moves at such a pace and clip you wont know what stops and goes. But Maddin's mind works wonders as a master of his craft and at relaying his own personality and life experiences in the framework of what is essentially a really demented B-movie. It's like with Jodorowsky: he makes movies with his you-know-what as opposed to his head. I wouldn't want it any other way.


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