The Skeleton Key (Widescreen) product details page

The Skeleton Key (Widescreen)

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For an hour, Iain Softley's The Skeleton Key gives off the buzz of a genre film pulled off with great craft. The spooky Southern gothic setting oozes menace, and the art direction of the spooky house itself seems appropriately sparse, until one realizes how detailed the little details are. The actors all understand what is required of them, and Softley gives them just enough room to find the right pitch for the performances. Gena Rowlands and Peter Sarsgaard walk the line of overacting without ever crossing it, and many of their moments offer the simple pleasure of watching very gifted performers enjoying themselves. Sadly the screenplay is unable to match their level of skill. Ehren Kruger's "twist" ending should be easy for any regular moviegoer to figure out, but that would be easy to excuse if there were any thematic weight to the film. Sadly, there is nothing for the viewer to take from the film other than the most surface of surface pleasures. Everything about The Skeleton Key is well-crafted, except the screenplay. Perry Seibert, All Movie Guide