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The Skeleton Key [HD DVD]


Price: £4.57 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
Only 5 left in stock.
Sold by Quality Media Supplies Ltd. and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
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£4.57 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details Only 5 left in stock. Sold by Quality Media Supplies Ltd. and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Product details

  • Actors: Kate Hudson, Gena Rowlands, John Hurt, Peter Sarsgaard, Joy Bryant
  • Directors: Iain Softley
  • Producers: Iain Softley, Daniel Bobker, Michael Shamberg, Stacey Sher
  • Format: HD DVD
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Universal
  • DVD Release Date: 10 Dec. 2007
  • Run Time: 104 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000W668OY
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 96,469 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

After New Orleans hospice worker Caroline (Kate Hudson) answers a help wanted ad, she finds herself working as the live-in caretaker of Ben Devereaux (John Hurt), a stroke victim who has lost his ability to speak. Ben's wife, Violet (Gena Rowlands), presents Caroline with a skeleton key to open any door in the house with the exception of one, which she claims she has never been able to open. But curiosity gets the best of her, and Caroline opens the door to find a wealth of materials representing the old house's history of hoodoo, an ancient form of folk magic. She soon discovers that the house harbours a dark secret one that Violet knows more about than she first admits. Breaking her string of lighthearted romantic comedies, Kate Hudson gives a performance that proves she's more than capable of playing a feisty damsel in distress. Ehren Kruger's (The Ring) script gives her some physically demanding scenes, while providing the audience with a steady string of effective jolts culminating in a twist that few are likely to see coming. Louisiana's swampy, heavy atmosphere is literally a character in the film, while Gena Rowlands, at age 75, astounds once again with one of her most surprising roles.

From Amazon.co.uk

Steeped in rain, humidity, and eerie bayou atmosphere, The Skeleton Key is an entertaining supernatural thriller that makes excellent use of its Louisiana locations. New Orleans and the rural environs of Terrebonne Parish are crucial in setting up the creepy circumstances that find compassionate caregiver Caroline Ellis (Kate Hudson) newly employed at the backwater plantation home of Violet (Gena Rowlands) and her invalid husband Ben (John Hurt), who's been rendered mute and seemingly helpless by a recent stroke. The place is rife with mystery, shrouded in the secrets of a suspicious past and, under Violet's stern supervision, plagued by superstition involving the use of Hoodoo magic spells (not to be confused with Voodoo, as explored in the similarly suspenseful Angel Heart) intended to protect the house from harm. But Caroline soon discovers the source of the mystery, and why Ben (who can barely utter a word) is so desperate to escape his seemingly comfortable domesticity. There are a few loopholes in the screenplay by prolific horror writer Ehren Kruger (The Ring and The Brothers Grimm), but director Iain Softley (Wings of the Dove) expertly emphasizes the edgy air of mystery, pushing some effective shocks while encouraging fine work from Hudson, Peter Sarsgaard (as Violet's lawyer) and especially Rowlands, who's genuinely disturbing as Skeleton Key nears a twist ending that's undeniably effective. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to the DVD edition.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 45 people found the following review helpful By "rayrimmer83" on 4 Oct. 2005
Format: DVD
When I started watching this film I couldn't figure out what it was going to be about. It starts off with Kate Hudson working in a hospice. She gets sick of the job and decides to find a new one. She then finds a job in the paper which is looking after an elderly man who has had a stroke. She moves to the mansion to start work. This is when the suspence begins. I can't tell you much from now as it spoils the film but it keeps you thinking all the way to the end. Totally unexpected ending. It has a few edgey scenes but it's the story that grips you and keeps you watching. Not a blood and guts horror but very good if you like a film that keeps you thinking. Definaltely one to add to your Dvd collection. You won't be dissapointed!!
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By DVD Fan on 1 Feb. 2006
Format: DVD
I wasn't sure what to expect when I watched The skeleton key. I rented it after seeing a couple of trailers as it looked quite a good thriller. I wasn't disappointed either, this is a good thriller with a good twist!
A healthcare nurse for the elderly decides that the old peoples home isn't for her and would rather give one to one care. She takes a job living with an old couple to help look after the terminally ill man. However the house has a dark past and all is not as it seems!
It's not really scary, but it has a few suspenseful moments as Kate Hudson wanders about the house at night in her underwear investigating strange noises and shadows. It's well acted and the story is good but many will see the end coming long before. Overall good fun for a nights entertainment, especially if you enjoyed the likes of Secret window, What lies beneath etc, with plenty of DVD extras as well! 7/10
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By L. Davidson VINE VOICE on 15 Mar. 2006
Format: DVD
"The Skeleton Key" is an enjoyable thriller , well acted and filmed ,with a chilling plot based around the "hoodoo" witchcraft of Louisiana. Kate Hudson's serious minded character isn't one much for smiling at the best of times , but after she takes up a new job as a nurse for a dying man in an old house outside New Orleans , there is even less reason for her to smile as a series of discoveries and disturbing events lead her unexpectedly into the dangerous world of the occult.The tension and suspense escalates steadily and there is an exciting finale with a neat twist at the end. There is a fair amount of depth to the "The Skeleton Key" ,with the "hoodoo" backdrop providing most of it and the characters and dialogue were credible. Definitely one of the better horror/thrillers I have seen lately.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mr. J. WARE on 3 April 2006
Format: DVD
At first, this film was building up to be a lame horror. A dull story about a nurse having to look after a stroke victim. A plodding plot, with no scares and uninteresting characters only barely passing the acting grade.
But to unlock this film's real treasure, you need to give it the time of day, as it comes with one genuine sucker punch of an ending. For a long time a movie's "twist" has been obvious, or just rubbish. It's been ages since I saw a movie that genuinely shocked me come the ending, and was actually pretty decent and made me glad I had watched through that dull hour and 20 minutes.
But the film doesn't offer much more than that, although that is worth watching the movie for. It's not remotely scary, the acting is slightly hammy, and it's just far too plain for far too long. But, as I've said, come the end, I didn't mind.
Extras wise, although bountiful, they don't fit the mood of the film. Whereas the film has long shots, and moves at snail pace, the extras are like MTV documentarys - very fast moving, fast cuts and edits and shaky, abstract camera work.
Still, the extras are quite good, particularly a recipe for making gumbo. Kate Hudson's ghost story is a little lame, but the making ofs are interesting and show behind the scenes.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Some Bloke on 23 Jan. 2007
Format: DVD
Horrow can be puerile "look how nasty we are" or it can use suspense, ideas and a good story. The strength here is that there is a great central concept which only becomes apparent at the end, giving the plot a 'twist' effect. The plot is interesting along the way, and the script holds a good balance between giving clues and concealing the suprise - in other words there's some consistency.

It is genuinely creepy and the suspense is good. The central themes are voodoo and a young care worker stumbling on some odd situations which leads her to try to get to the bottom of it all.

Extras were limited and I would have liked to have seen more of the research and findings on real voodoo and less of the fillers.

Good story done professionally and good entertainment. Suspenseful more than shocking and gross, and made me think about whether it really could happen.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By K. A. Mearns on 2 Dec. 2005
Format: DVD
I have just recently rented this film for something to watch, not buying it first incase i didn't like it. But after finishing this film i was very pleasantly surprised as i rented this as a horror which didn't look scary, and found myself with more of a thriller, which was, for lack or a better word - chilling.
The film is based around Caroline (Kate Hudson) who, sick of the job she is in (due to people's lack of caring) takes a job in a large mansion looking after an elderly man who has suffered from a stroke and is paralysed. She is given (skeleton) key which will open every door in the house by the man's wife, who to Caroline seems quite strange as she allows no mirrors in the house. Caroline gets on with her work but it is only when she discovers a secret room in the attic (which the key won't open) and forces her way in that room and finds many objects relating to 'HooDoo' (am ancient magic) that the mystery deepin's. As she becomes more and more involved with the strange house and the mystery that lies within, and delves further into the HooDoo magic that a series of shocking events take place and lead to a shocking climax (that i never even guessed) which leaves the viewer in shock but satisfied as the film ties itself up nicely.
The acting in this film is superb with Kate's performance flawless and extremely believable. The settings are few but effective and the house is the perfect setting for this chilling tale.
I can't comment on the features for this DVD as it was a rental and i never had time to watch them but going but what it says on the packet, they seem really good for a single disc DVD.
This is definatly one i'm going to buy as it's one i could see me watching over and over and i'm sure alot of people will feel the same. So i recommend this if you are looking for a film that keeps you guessing right through till the end without being a total gore-fest.
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