The Forbidden Room

Oct 16 - Oct 22, 2015

(Guy Maddin & Evan Johnson, 2015, United States)

Seattle Premiere!


Notable Manitoban, enfant terrible, and longtime friend of NWFF Guy Maddin along with co-director Evan Johnson pay kaleidoscopic tribute to the cinematic canon in The Forbidden Room, a veritable psychedelic trip through the very form of film.


After opening with a memorably peculiar instructional scene on bath-taking, the film hurtles forth into the innards of a submarine in danger of never resurfacing from the dark depths. When a wandering woodsman appears out of nowhere, the already decidedly unusual trip takes a turn for the phantasmagoric. Shot by Seattle's own Ben Kasulke, The Forbidden Room is a film that guts and riles and rankles the intestines of cinematic history to grand and utterly unparalleled effect, invoking citations as far ranging as Italo Calvino, Sergei Eisenstein, Jean-Luc Godard and even Christopher Nolan.


The Forbidden Room sprang from an interactive project where Maddin breathed new life into long-forgotten silent films, re-creating them in live iterations in Paris and Montreal. To turn the project into a fully fledged film-about-films, Maddin enlisted poet John Ashberry, co-director Evan Johnson, and a remarkable cast that includes Mathieu Amalric, Udo Kier, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin, Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin, Maria de Medeiros, Jacques Nolot, Adele Haenel, Amira Casar and Elina Lowensohn

The Forbidden Room premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and most recently screened at Toronto International Film Festival and New York Film Festival. As Maddin mentions in his director’s statement, “Stay safe and enjoy!”


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