The Keeping Room (2015)

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Critic Consensus: Aided by its spare setting and committed performances, The Keeping Room is just fascinatingly off-kilter enough to overcome its frustrating stumbles.

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In this radically reimagined American Western set towards the end of the Civil War, Southerner Augusta encounters two renegade, drunken soldiers who are on a mission of pillage and violence. After escaping an attempted assault, Augusta races back to the isolated farmhouse that she shares with her sister Louise and their female slave Mad. When the pair of soldiers track Augusta down intent on exacting revenge, the trio of women are forced to take up arms to fend off their assailants, finding ways to resourcefully defend their home--and themselves--as the escalating attacks become more unpredictable and relentless.

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Critic Reviews for The Keeping Room

All Critics (83) | Top Critics (22)

Writer Julia Hart and director Daniel Barber develop the women's relationships at a careful, steady pace, giving them time to bond; this is essential since they must learn to trust and respect each other to survive.

Dec 10, 2015 | Full Review…

Dark, brooding and brutal, "The Keeping Room" features finely carved performances in a Civil War period piece that might as well be post-apocalyptic.

Nov 6, 2015 | Rating: B | Full Review…
Detroit News
Top Critic

While the gender-based farmhouse siege is suspenseful and bloody, director Daniel Barber weighs in too heavily with extended silences that slow down the goings-on of a film that has darkly lit tension, lovely scenery and fiercely presented ideas ...

Oct 30, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

The landscape is appropriately lush, the brutality is deftly rendered, and if the action is minimal, that may be because it isn't quite the point.

Oct 29, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

The scattershot story doesn't fully serve this stellar cast, as the drama often flags. But when it connects, the tension is almost unbearable.

Oct 29, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Despite its sparseness and haunting photography, the film proves to be little more than a home-invasion thriller low on thrills.

Oct 15, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

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