Archive of films Forbidden Room / The Forbidden Room

2015, 128 min

Section: Imagina
Year: 2015

Do you know how to take a bath properly? And did you know that when a submarine starts running out of air you can get oxygen from pancake bubbles? In his latest phantasmagoric offering, Guy Maddin (aided by Geraldine Chaplin and Udo Kier) demonstrates the indefatigability of his imagination while reinvigorating the spirit of movies that once existed but have been lost forever.


Did anyone here say abstinence is a virtue? And isn’t it better to be an obsessive than a staid stick in the mud? “I wanted to overwhelm... I wanted the color palette to break people´s brains,” says Guy Maddin about his latest technicolor phantasmagoria, aptly describing it as a Russian nesting doll of a film. Here the directors superimpose and intermingle a multitudinal series of adventures drawn from actual film plots while freely taking inspiration from the silent era and the days when sound first began making headway in the film industry. An affectionate pastiche of the instructional film, the story of a man who cannot stop pinching women’s backsides, traces of German Expressionism, and over-the-top numbers that seem to have dropped out of a musical. The result is pure hedonist hooch, an intense motion picture that seems to burn with a fever as it moves indefatigably from idea to idea with the same care it gives to each and every shot. A film that’s like a game – full of adventure, terror, and burning passion even though there’s nothing to fear.

Viktor Palák

About the director

Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson

Guy Maddin (b. 1956, Winnipeg), leading Canadian filmmaker, debuted in features with the playful Tales from the Gimli Hospital (1988). His next picture, Archangel (1990), won Best Experimental Film from America’s National Society of Film Critics, while the “ballet horror” film Dracula: Pages from a Virgin’s Diary (2002) took an International Emmy and was screened to Karlovy Vary audiences. After premiering at the Berlinale, he also submitted The Saddest Music in the World (2003) and the nontraditional documentary My Winnipeg (2007) for presentation at KVIFF. In his pictures Maddin works with the subconscious, often adopting the esthetic of the silent film era. His recurring collaborators include Charlotte Rampling and Udo Kier. Evan Johnson is a Canadian filmmaker who has worked with Guy Maddin since 2009. His cooperative projects include Seances, which began at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.


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About the film

Color, DCP

Section: Imagina
Director: Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson
Screenplay: Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson, Robert Kotyk
Dir. of Photography: Stephanie Weber-Biron, Ben Kasulke
Editor: John Gurdebeke
Art Director: Brigitte Henry, Chris Lavis, Maciek Szczerbowski
Producer: Phyllis Laing, David Christensen, Phoebe Greemberg, Penny Mancuso
Production: Phi Films, Buffalo Gal Pictures
Coproduction: The National Film Board of Canada
Cast: Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin, Céline Bonnier, Karine Vanasse, Caroline Dhavernas, Paul Ahmarani, Mathieu Almaric, Udo Kier, Maria de Medeiros, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin
Sales: Mongrel International


Udo Kier



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