Udo Kier and Isabella Rossellini in KEYHOLE, a film by Guy Maddin. Picture courtesy Monterey Media. All rights reserved.


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* Most external filmography links go to The Internet Movie Database.

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Keyhole (2011/2012)

Opened: 04/06/2012 Limited

IFC Center04/06/2012 - 04/19/201214 days
NoHo 704/13/2012 - 04/19/20127 days
Playhouse 704/13/2012 - 04/19/20127 days

Trailer: Click for trailer

Websites: Home, Facebook

Genre: Canadian Thriller

Rated: R for for graphic nudity, sexuality, violent content and some language.


In a house haunted with memories, gangster and father Ulysses Pick (Jason Patric) arrives home after a long absence, towing the body of a teenaged girl and a bound and gagged young man. His gang waits inside his house, having shot their way past police. There is friction in the ranks. Ulysses, however, is focused on one thing: journeying through the house, room by room, and reaching his wife Hyacinth (Isabella Rossellini) in her bedroom upstairs. The equilibrium of the house has been disturbed, and his odyssey eventually becomes an emotional tour, as the ghostly nooks and crannies of the house reveal more about the mysterious Pick family.

Select Accolades

"'I feel charged!" says the man in the electric chair. A great Guy Maddin film will do that to you - and make no mistake, this is one of his great ones. Maddin's mad melange of melodramatic ghosts and meddlesome mobsters frames a memory tour like none other, exploding two genres with one powerful pop. Jason Patric is homeriffic as Ulysses, a charismatic gangster whose violent personal odyssey returns him to his haunted home, therein to confront the restless spirits and animated bodies who haunt him." -- The Toronto Star

"3 1/2 Stars. Surreal, sensational and weird, the film is pure maddeningly, magic Maddin. Winnipeg's Guy Maddin remains the most innovative, maddeningly, magic Maddin. Winnipeg's Guy Maddin remains the most innovative, high-risk gambler in Canadian cinema." -- Toronto Sun

"At times as creepy as THE SHINING." -- Gavin Smith, Film Comment

"3 Stars." -- The Globe and Mail

"Everything you could possibly want from a Guy Maddin endeavour is intact, and when it peaks, KEYHOLE is a wildly unique and enthralling as his best work." -- Exclain.Ca

"3 Skulls" -- Fangoria

"There's certainly an aesthetic consistency to Maddin's surreal universe, which as always is a seductive place in which to get lost." -- The Hollywood Reporter

Director's Statement

Keyhole is a domestic Odyssey across carpets and floor tiles instead of across the sea. Here, in the old family home, the film can poetically study the emotionally complex importance of the house, everyone's house, and all the memories that haunt every nook and cranny of our childhood domiciles. The film is as much an autobiography of a house as anything else.

Ultimately, by embedding the entire drama in the house to which all my fictional family's memories are welded, I hope to divine the nature of the love we all have for our homes, and the love produced by our homes. These studies of the poetics of domestic space are contemplative themes, but the galloping narrative drive of the Odyssey enables me to employ a propulsive story. The gangsters-in-a-haunted-house genre, an admittedly rare, but not un-useful film niche -- the Bowery Boys' "Spooks Run Wild" comes to mind as an unlikely B-movie inspiration, one used by poet John Ashberry in his most recent collection of work -- has emerged as a most latently powerful device for transforming this meditative story into a most compellingly, hauntingly and universally true tale of domestic love and familial memory.

-- Guy Maddin, Director