The Skeleton Key

Rated PG-13 104 minutes 2005

Kate Hudson, looking more like mama Goldie Hawn with each passing paycheck, plays a nurse named Caroline who takes care of a coma-stricken man (John Hurt) living with his cranky missus (Gena Rowlands) on a decrepit plantation in the swamps of Louisiana. The lady gives Caroline a key that opens every room in the house, save one: a hidden door in the attic. As it turns out, Caroline's a pretty lousy caregiver, more Nancy Drew than Mother Teresa, as she suspects that the man isn't in a coma, but the victim of some hoodoo spell placed upon him by his wife. She has no good reason for thinking this but does anyway, because if she were to act at all like a normal person and, ya know, flee the creepy house and its creepier caretakers, there would be no movie. Ultimately, the filmmakers build toward a reasonably satisfying Twilight Zone climax, only they crawl toward the ho-hum ending; the movie appears to have been written and edited in a swamp too.

Film Credits

Official Site:

Director: Iain Softley

Writer: Ehren Kruger

Producer: Daniel Bobker, Stacey Sher and Michael Shamberg

Cast: Kate Hudson, John Hurt, Peter Sarsgaard, Joy Bryant, Forrest Landis, Gena Rowlands, Jen Apgar, Andreas Beckett, Ann Dalrymple and Justin Groetsch

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