The Skeleton Key is about Caroline (Kate Hudson) who is a nurse working as a hospice caretaker. She is called to work at a plantation deep south in New Orleans. Caroline is to look after Ben (John Hurt), who is paralyzed after “that incident” in the attic. Violet (Gena Rowlands), Ben’s wife, is the other person living in the house. Caroline and Violet don’t exactly hit it off initially but the friendship is strengthened with the help of Luke, the lawyer taking care of the real estate business.
In short I must say I enjoyed this movie immensely because of the way it was handled. The creepy atmosphere, the eeriness of the house, the music and the foreboding tension that creeps up to you. Caroline is given the skeleton key, which means she can open any doors to the house. However, there is one door in the attic which doesn’t open, and Caroline’s determination leads her into that room where she discover startling things.
Through her discoveries of what really happened in the attic, Caroline realizes, with the help of her friend Jill, that Hoodoo (not voodoo), a mysterious religion is practiced heavily here. So, in an attempt to to bring Ben out of his curse, she attempts to uncurse him through Hoodoo. “What I don’t believe in, can’t hurt me, right?” Well, fearing is believing! Caroline ends herself up more deeply than she ever wanted to.
The movie does pose an interesting question: can something you don’t believe in hurt you still?
The ending is a very smart one, and will not leave you cheated. You don’t know what’s cleverer: the ending, or the twist. It’s a smart, intelligent movie pretty much like The Others. I would watch this one again.
4 out of 5.