|Index||7 reviews in total|
37 out of 54 people found the following review useful:
Expectations are Key, 12 February 2012
Author: warriorofwords from Canada
Before viewing, I saw this film referred to as a '30s Gangster homage' or noir-styled 'drama'. For anyone expecting a throwback film or conventional narrative, Keyhole will confuse and then, probably, disappoint. In fact, Keyhole is a very abstract take on the memories and emotions harboured inside an old house, which is inhabited by ghosts and other slaves to the past. And while Keyhole isn't a gripping crime thriller, neither should it be taken purely as an academic statement or challenging art-house experiment. Like most of Maddin's films, the dark absurdity and creative imagery is almost casually amusing and less pretentious than comparable movies. The cinematography, music, art direction and performances are tremendously captivating, if occasionally over-bearing. For anyone who's intrigued by these elements as much as by the often-mislead depiction of the film in mainstream media should definitely see Keyhole. Anyone who's turned off by bizarre inventions of unorthodox storytelling should leave this door locked.
3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Manitobans Tax Money at Waste, 1 November 2012
Author: idrmrsr from United States
While I'm definitely a Maddin fan, make no mistake about that, and I
recognize his hat tips to Lynch and Von Trier and Harmony Korine, and I
love any movie with Udo Kier in it, clearly this is a
take-the-tax-grant and run flick.
Meanwhile, I'm going to strip naked and go to the antique mall and make some foggy black and white videos for YouTube and see which government wants to bankroll me for more! The 3 rating is strictly for how well this stacks up with other Maddin predecessors. The uninitiated, unless chemically altered, would probably strain to give it a zero.
IMDb here is insisting I go on at length in my review. I'm so glad there is governmental support for the arts, but sometimes it's just a siphon into a drain somewhere. For once, I am going to call this out. I will have to do so extensively, or I won't pass muster for my review length.
I did think some of the bric-a-brac props in the movie were cool. I like to shop antique flea markets myself, and some of the stuff was really prize. OK, I think I have filled up the text buffer to this website's satisfaction.
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Self indulgent tripe..., 8 March 2013
Author: daniel_lalla from Canada
I love unusual films, B&W films, cryptic films, film noir, gangster
films, David Lynch films, and while this tries to be most of the
aforementioned rolled into one, it is just bad beyond words. Swinging
lights and cameras, bizarre cutaways, pseudo-meaningful narration.. Mix
in a big name or two for 'star power'. Full of sound and fury and
signifying nothing. I can't believe this film was commissioned.
Dialogue that you wouldn't even find in a cheap b-movie. Ghosts. Rattling chains. Gangsters. Dream sequence logic but not really ever engaging in any meaningful way. And I normally love movies like this! I like movies you have to work at to understand, this one makes me not want to even bother.
Just atrocious. Made want to stop watching movies, period. I have to wait a while and put on some real movies to get the bad taste of this one out of my system. Really... that bad. I considered two stars then I watched a little more and I wished I could give a zero.
4 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Another great Maddin film, 23 July 2012
Author: zetes from Saint Paul, MN
Guy Maddin's new feature is pretty typical for the director. If you're a fan, it'll please you. If you're among the uninitiated, it'll drive you nuts. Me, I'm an enormous fan, have seen almost all of his films more than once and own all of his features except for the one that's unavailable on DVD (and this one). Keyhole may even be a bit more esoteric than his other films, but certainly not by much. Jason Patrick (of all people) stars as a probably dead gangster who holes up in his old house along with his gang. He wants to reconnect with his wife (Isabella Rossellini, who has had her wagon hitched to Maddin for about a decade now), who is locked upstairs and unwilling to come out (Patrick talks to her through the titular hole). The house is haunted by various ghosts from the past, including frequent Maddin collaborator Louis Negin, playing Rossellini's father, who is chained naked to her bed and often wanders about the house whipping the other ghosts. Patrick explores the house, trying to find a way to get to his wife, alongside a pretty, young blind girl (Brooke Palsson) who always feels as if she is drowning, and a gagged hostage that the gang has taken (David Wontner). As Patrick explores, the rest of his gang plans to betray him. Other recognizable members of the cast include Udo Kier, who plays a doctor, and Kevin McDonald of The Kids in the Hall (Maddin formerly worked with Kid in the Hall Mike McKinney in The Saddest Music in the World, and was honestly a much better fit for the director than McDonald is). As you might have figured out by now, this is pretty weird. As is common with Maddin's films, he had about fifty weird ideas and combined them into a feature. That might sound like it could be a mess, but if anyone can handle something like this, it's Maddin. And I loved it. His aesthetic hasn't changed much in the past decade or so, but he's a master of imagery. I also love his dreamy dialogue and sound design. I certainly wouldn't recommend an uninitiated viewer to start with this one, but, again, if you're a fan, don't hesitate.
1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Well, I tried... Really I did..., 18 February 2013
Author: lathe-of-heaven from Sunny Southern California, USA
Usually I do not go out of my way to give poor reviews; if I don't like
a film, normally I just don't bother.
Since I AM an avid fan of Surreal, Abstract, and vague Art films, I felt that I really should leave some comments. SERIOUSLY, I really LOVE David Lynch, Jean DeCocteau, and even some Jodorowski, etc. But this film... It just left me ABSOLUTELY cold. Period.
I mean, honestly, I really do like way out SUPER weird films, I do. But, when all I see is a bunch of quick, senseless edits, constant repetitive shots of people squawking, and just a TOTAL mishmash with, and here is THE key, NO real atmosphere or mood at all, at least ZERO created for me while watching this... THEN I just have to be totally honest and say, 'This is completely meaningless; it really is.
For example, let's say in 'ERASERHEAD', you have many, MANY long scenes where it looks like nothing is happening and so on the surface it LOOKS like just long, static shots. BUT... and it is a BIG BUT like Mariah Carreys, There is MOOD pouring and dripping from every damn frame. Intensity with layers of underlying tension in the soundtrack. The lighting is to die for, etc., etc., etc...
But, with this film, you don't even get any of that. YES, there are individual shots that could be construed as creative stills, but the way they are all put together, or NOT put together doesn't end up really doing very much for me at all, cinematically, mood-wise,or in any way really...
I DO respect the fact though that others here apparently really do like the film and in some way that I do not understand it resonates with them as an authentic artwork and does indeed DO something for them personally. I guess whatever it is that others ARE relating to in this film, must be passing me by and I'm not seeing what they see. I suppose what you can take from this is that if you are like me and you like your Surrealism / Artfilms to be more ponderous and indirect and more heavily laced with a deep moodiness such as Lynch's 'ERASERHEAD' where you appreciate the silences and pauses and it is more an appeal to the dark subconscious, then you may not like this film where there is more frenetic editing and the imagery, at least in my lowly opinion, is much more obvious and overt with big, fat, old, naked men lying on the floor with their little wee wee's and fat bellies hanging out and quick close-ups of his lined face, and fast, choppy edits between people's faces and dark rooms, and then back again as they let out these bizarre baying sounds. Sorry, just not my kind of stuff...
I'm afraid that I must side with others here who are panning this film; maybe I'm just missing something, and I DID give it a '3' because the B&W photography looked nice. But quite honestly as far as I'm concerned, I think It rather rip my own testicles off then have to sit through this movie (let's hope it doesn't come to that...)
4 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Surreal treat for those who like surrealism., 17 June 2012
Author: Jon Doe from yourhdd
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This film is guaranteed to draw differing opinions as to how good/bad
this film is. This film is very surreal with strange artistic imagery
and dreamlike sequences that come as close as you can get to being in a
It follows Ulysses Pick, a career criminal and deadbeat dad as he goes through some deep self exploration sometime in the early 20th century. After a robbery and shoot out, Ulysses(played by Jason Patric) and his gang decide to hold up in an abandoned old house, but nothing is what it seems as this house hold a lot of forgotten secrets for Ulysses and the ghosts from Ulysses' past haunt him deeply. Sorry no spoilers here you will have to see is and figure out the rest for yourself.
The whole film itself is one big dream sequence that is guaranteed to fly over a lot of heads and anger the casual movie watcher while being an absolute treat to those who love artistic horror/thriller films with hidden/multiple meanings and interpretations. Each scene is carefully woven together to make you think and make you giddy with anticipation of whats going to happen next or what it all means.
Definitely not for everyone and not a cookie cutter film by any means. It's a surreal journey into the mind of Ulysses, a man with a lot of regrets and a past that haunts him deeply.
23 out of 52 people found the following review useful:
An admirable attempt, but fails miserably, 14 June 2012
Author: pathorick from United States
Does anybody remember the awful student film that showed in the movie "Private Parts"? Cinematic genius compared to this. People wandering around naked with no real purpose, lots of moaning, and the only way to fully understand what was going on, was a voice-over explaining each scene. That's this film in a nutshell. I guarantee the votes are going to drop exponentially until it gets the 2 it deserves.I get the concept, it's like a college Avant Garde, or an attempt at a college Avant Garde film, trying to retell "The Odyssey". But suck is still suck, regardless of the source material. Highbrow critics will swear this is great cinema, but in their attempt to seem above us, they are hitching their star to a wagon without wheels.
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