6.5/10
99,091
385 user 195 critic

The Skeleton Key (2005)

PG-13 | | Drama, Horror, Mystery | 12 August 2005 (USA)
Trailer
2:22 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $3.99 (HD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
A hospice nurse working at a spooky New Orleans plantation home finds herself entangled in a mystery involving the house's dark past.

Director:

Iain Softley

Writer:

Ehren Kruger
5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A lawyer takes on a negligent homicide case involving a priest who performed an exorcism on a young girl.

Director: Scott Derrickson
Stars: Laura Linney, Tom Wilkinson, Shohreh Aghdashloo
Gothika (2003)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A repressed female psychiatrist wakes up as a patient in the asylum where she worked, with no memory of why she is there or what she has done.

Director: Mathieu Kassovitz
Stars: Halle Berry, Penélope Cruz, Robert Downey Jr.
Mirrors I (2008)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

An ex-cop and his family are the target of an evil force that is using mirrors as a gateway into their home.

Director: Alexandre Aja
Stars: Kiefer Sutherland, Paula Patton, Amy Smart
The Uninvited (2009)
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Anna returns home after a stint in a mental hospital, but her recovery is jeopardized by her cruel stepmother and ghastly visions of her dead mother.

Directors: Charles Guard, Thomas Guard
Stars: Emily Browning, Arielle Kebbel, Elizabeth Banks
1408 (2007)
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A man who specializes in debunking paranormal occurrences checks into the fabled room 1408 in the Dolphin Hotel. Soon after settling in, he confronts genuine terror.

Director: Mikael Håfström
Stars: John Cusack, Samuel L. Jackson, Mary McCormack
The Others (2001)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A woman who lives in her darkened old family house with her two photosensitive children becomes convinced that the home is haunted.

Director: Alejandro Amenábar
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Christopher Eccleston, Fionnula Flanagan
Orphan (2009)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A husband and wife who recently lost their baby adopt a 9 year-old girl who is not nearly as innocent as she claims to be.

Director: Jaume Collet-Serra
Stars: Vera Farmiga, Peter Sarsgaard, Isabelle Fuhrman
Case 39 (2009)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A social worker fights to save a girl from her abusive parents, only to discover that the situation is more dangerous than she ever expected.

Director: Christian Alvart
Stars: Renée Zellweger, Ian McShane, Jodelle Ferland
The Ring (2002)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A journalist must investigate a mysterious videotape which seems to cause the death of anyone one week to the day after they view it.

Director: Gore Verbinski
Stars: Naomi Watts, Martin Henderson, Brian Cox
House of Wax (2005)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A group of unwitting teens are stranded near a strange wax museum and soon must fight to survive and keep from becoming the next exhibit.

Director: Jaume Collet-Serra
Stars: Chad Michael Murray, Paris Hilton, Elisha Cuthbert
Dead Silence (2007)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A young widower returns to his hometown to search for answers to his wife's murder, which may be linked to the ghost of a murdered ventriloquist.

Director: James Wan
Stars: Ryan Kwanten, Amber Valletta, Donnie Wahlberg
Silent Hill (2006)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A woman, Rose, goes in search for her adopted daughter within the confines of a strange, desolate town called Silent Hill.

Director: Christophe Gans
Stars: Radha Mitchell, Laurie Holden, Sean Bean
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kate Hudson ... Caroline Ellis
Gena Rowlands ... Violet Devereaux
John Hurt ... Ben Devereaux
Peter Sarsgaard ... Luke Marshall
Joy Bryant ... Jill
Maxine Barnett Maxine Barnett ... Mama Cynthia
Fahnlohnee R. Harris Fahnlohnee R. Harris ... Hallie (as Fahnlohnee Harris)
Marion Zinser Marion Zinser ... Bayou Woman
Deneen Tyler ... Desk Nurse
Ann Dalrymple ... C.N.A.
Trula M. Marcus Trula M. Marcus ... Nurse Trula (as Trula Marcus)
Tonya Staten Tonya Staten ... Nurse Audrey
Thomas Uskali ... Robertson Thorpe (as Tom Uskali)
Jen Apgar ... Madeleine Thorpe
Forrest Landis ... Martin Thorpe
Edit

Storyline

A young hospice worker helping care for an invalid who lives in a remote mansion in the Louisiana bayous finds herself caught in the middle of morbid happenings centered around a group of Hoodoo practitioners. Written by Ed

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It can open any door. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, disturbing images, some partial nudity and thematic material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

UIP [Brazil] | UIP [Spain] | See more »

Country:

USA | Germany

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

12 August 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der verbotene Schlüssel See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$43,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$16,057,945, 14 August 2005, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$47,806,295, 23 October 2005

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$45,081,407, 31 December 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

At the opening of the film, the book that Caroline is reading to the hospice patient is Robert Louis Stevenson's "Treasure Island". Toward the beginning of that work, Jim Hawkins is caring for the elderly Billy Bones after the man has a stroke. Caroline begins her ordeal in the same way: taking care of the elderly Ben Devereaux post-stroke. See more »

Goofs

When Caroline is reporting for her interview, she steps out of her car and walks up to the house for the first time. We see her back from the car's side mirror. In reality, the car is parked (and she walked) in a direction that would not allow her to be visible in the car's side mirror. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Caroline Ellis: [reading from Treasure Island] I lost no time, of course, in telling my mother all that I knew, and we saw ourselves at once in a difficult and dangerous position. Something must speedily be resolved upon, and it occurred to us at last to go forth together and seek help in the neighboring hamlet. No sooner said than done. Bare-headed as we were, we ran out at once into the gathering evening and the frosty fog. The hamlet lay not many hundred yards away, though out of view on the ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits. See more »


Soundtracks

The Goldrush
Written by Joe Washbourn
Performed by Joe Washbourn
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
still spooked by the ending
12 August 2005 | by aharmasSee all my reviews

Part of the success of this type of movie is setting up and making sure its resolution lives up to its expectations. I must say that in this film everything seems to work, and yet... I'm not sure what spooked more: its ending or the nature of its ending.

The film deals with the adventures of a young care worker in the middle of Louisiana. The atmospheric surroundings, the haunting score, beautiful, spooky photography, and some very good acting by Rowlands and Kate Hudson raise the bar for upcoming "horror films". We're glued to the screen for nearly two hours, as things become more mysterious and intriguing. A few times we're treated to a jolt and a revelation, but what closes the film is bound to ruffle a few feathers.

Above all, this is a very good movie, with a script that doesn't cheat anyone and doesn't rely on silly gimmicks. Those factors should portend good tidings for its success in its original release, but it will probably become a classic of its kind. The heroine in distress manages to be smarter than the usual stereotype. She wants to explore the surroundings and solve the problem. The problem is she has no idea how bad the situation might be.

Gena Rowlands provides her character with nuances rarely seen in this type of film. She is a strange character and hooks up the audience from the very beginning. There is no really an archetype for what Rowlands brings to life. A few might find the previous statement questionable, but if you look closely to the development of her character, it is almost an original.

Kate Hudson makes a very strong impression in this film. She goes beyond the pretty actress to an accomplished performer who matches up to Rowland's intensity. She navigates the film with an ease rarely seen in today's roster of plastic pre-packaged pseudo celebrities. It is refreshing to see an actress make you care for the character that has so often been portrayed as an offensive stereotype. There no gratitude's screaming scenes here. The film reminds me of "The Others", a movie with substance and intelligence.

This is a film that I will highly recommend to my friends, particularly because I want to hear what they have to say about that ending.


187 of 249 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 385 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Check Out What's Playing on IMDb Freedive

See what movies and TV series you can watch for free today, and visit IMDb Freedive for even more. Select any poster below to play the movie!

Find more things to watch

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed