The Skeleton Key

New Orleans is the home of many legends and folklore. It is a place where the paranormal and reality collide and create something unique.

The Skeleton Key brings out the best Louisiana has to offer… mystery but only if you believe.

Original Synopsis

A hospice nurse working at a spooky New Orleans plantation home finds herself entangled in a mystery involving the house’s dark past.

Overall View

Kate Hudson plays the character of a young twenty-five New Jersey hospice nurse, Caroline, taking care of seniors near their final days. She grows attached mostly to elderly men as it reminds her of her father and the friendship she never had.

The Skeleton Key – 2005

Working in New Orleans, in the unique and filled with history state of Louisiana, Caroline decides to change her routine and quit her job at the hospice hospital and take a live-in nurse job in Terrebonne. The moment she accepts the job despite the many red flags, that’s when it all went downhill for poor Caroline.

NOLA & Voodoo

Everyone who knows me, know that I am obsessed — that is a light statement, Louisiana. New Orleans, of course, speaks to me as a French woman, and my grandma was Acadian, so it cannot be a surprise that I immediately wished to see the movie.

As any fan of New Orleans and the paranormal, I knew about Voodoo, but not as much as I thought so when watching the movie. I, of course, made some research following the story and most information from it seems to support what I found on various websites.

The Skeleton Key - 2005
The Skeleton Key – 2005

What we know from Voodoo is mostly from Hollywood, who enjoys giving entertainment, therefore, making the subject larger than life and often giving it a bad reputation. However, Voodoo is more complicated than we think.

One thing the movie teaches us is that Voodoo has two branches: The Religion practiced by Haitian people who originally came from Africa. It encompasses the Roman Catholic religion with the belief that all that is alive is a spirit. They believe in healing, justice and restoring balance and energy.

Then there is the Voodoo that came to existence in Louisiana that took form from French Creole people, Europeans, and Native Americans. That Voodoo is the one that we know best due to its influence in a few Hollywood movie. One of the items that worked its way to our knowledge was the famous Voodoo dolls that we believe are only there to hurt people, can be used as a healing device, i.e. acupuncture doll.

The Big Easy

In The Skeleton Key movie, we are witnesses to the past of a particular plantation house in Terrebonne, in the swamps. The house holds many secrets, and some of them are quite disturbing. A room dedicated to voodoo is locked, and Caroline uses her skeleton key to find all the secrets because of her determination to save the husband, Ben, from his wife.

We jump back and forth between Terrebonne and New Orleans where Caroline meets with a Voodoo priestess to help her cure her patient because she believes that Ben believes it can heal him. Voodoo can’t do anything to you if you don’t believe it.

The Skeleton Key - 2005
The Skeleton Key – 2005

The movie displays Louisiana in a more paranormal way if you will, to fit the ambiance of the story and does it very well with its swamp and bayou scenery unique to the land. The cabaret where Caroline and her friend goes plays jazz and blues like you would imagine finding in New Orleans and adds to urge to visit this beautiful historical state.

The way the movie shows Louisiana in both beautiful and spooky aspects is incredible and had me hooked from the beginning.

Mama Cecile & Papa Justify

The old record player with the voice of the Voodoo priest is one of the creepiest records I’ve ever heard. Also, keep in mind that everything shown in the movie has a reason to be there and comes back later. The record plays words of a Conjure of Sacrifice ritual, and it is quite unnerving.

The Skeleton Key - 2005
The Skeleton Key – 2005

The story is fictional, but it almost has you believe it could be real or inspired by some dark occult legend maybe? I’ll be looking for it. I’ll dig up into it.

The fictional legend surrounding Mama Cecile and Papa Justify is at the heart of the entire story and is efficient in its way to have you wonder what might happen next and how it is unraveling before our eyes.

My Thoughts

I read a lot of horror novels and paranormal novels with plot twists in my life and let me tell you that despite being able to tell the ending of The Sixth Sense when it came out in the first chunk of the movie, this one had my mind blown away!

“I knew it!…Shit! That’s fucked up!”

Alexa Wayne watching The Skeleton Key

The Skeleton Key is one of my favorite movies, and I wish it were a book because I’d just read it over and over again. Louisiana, French, Creole, Voodoo and paranormal? I’m in!

The OCD Vampire,
Alexa Wayne


4 thoughts on “The Skeleton Key

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