7.1/10
1,131
10 user 40 critic

Cowards Bend the Knee (2003)

Cowards Bend the Knee or The Blue Hands (original title)
It's time for hockey! There's no telling what will happen when the Winnipeg Maroons' own star player Guy becomes embroiled in the twisted lives of Meta, a vengeful Chinoise, and her ... See full summary »

Director:

Writer:

On Disc

at Amazon

1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Returned home to his long-estranged mother upon a request from her deathbed, a man raised by his parents in an orphanage has to confront the childhood memories that have long haunted him.

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Gretchen Krich, Sullivan Brown, Maya Lawson
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

While their mother is dying in the modern Gimli, Manitoba hospital, two young children are told a tale by their Icelandic grandmother about Einar the Lonely, his friend Gunnar, and the ... See full summary »

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Kyle McCulloch, Michael Gottli, Angela Heck
Careful (1992)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In the Alpine village of Tolzbad in the 1800s, the townsfolk talk quietly and restrain their movements lest they incur avalanches. This atmosphere lends itself to repressed emotions - shown... See full summary »

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Kyle McCulloch, Gosia Dobrowolska, Sarah Neville
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A musical of sorts set in Winnipeg during the Great Depression, where a beer baroness organizes a contest to find the saddest music in the world. Musicians from around the world descend on the city to try and win the $25,000 prize.

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Isabella Rossellini, Mark McKinney, Maria de Medeiros
Archangel (1990)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An amnesiac soldier, seeking his lost love, arrives in Archangel in northern Russia to help the townsfolk in their fight against the Bolsheviks, all quite unaware that the Great War ended three months ago.

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Michael Gottli, David Falkenburg, Michael O'Sullivan
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Nikolai, a mortician, and Osip, an actor playing Christ in a play, are brothers in love with the same woman. Anna, a state scientist and said woman, is in love with both brothers and ... See full summary »

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Leslie Bais, Caelum Vatnsdal, Shaun Balbar
Comedy | Horror | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A ballet rendition of Bram Stoker's "Dracula", stylized as an Expressionistic silent film.

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Wei-Qiang Zhang, Tara Birtwhistle, David Moroni
Fantasy | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Peter Glahn is released after years of incarceration as a political prisoner and is now returning to his homeland, the mythical Mandragora where the sun never sets. On board the ship home, ... See full summary »

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Pascale Bussières, Shelley Duvall, Frank Gorshin
My Winnipeg (2007)
Documentary | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Fact, fantasy and memory are woven seamlessly together in this portrait of film-maker Guy Maddin's home town of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Darcy Fehr, Ann Savage, Louis Negin
Comedy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

In this non-linear amalgamation, submarine crewmen and a woodsman wend their way through a voyage of odd experiences.

Directors: Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson
Stars: Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin
Keyhole (2011)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Gangster and deadbeat dad, Ulysses Pick, embarks on an unusual journey through his home.

Director: Guy Maddin
Stars: Jason Patric, Isabella Rossellini, Udo Kier
The Green Fog (2017)
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Director Guy Maddin's interpretation of the Alfred Hitchcock classic Vertigo, pieced together using footage from old films and television shows shot in and around the San Francisco area.

Directors: Evan Johnson, Galen Johnson, and 1 more credit »
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Guy Maddin
Melissa Dionisio ...
Meta
...
Veronica
Tara Birtwhistle ...
Liliom
...
Dr. Fusi
Mike Bell ...
Mo Mott
David Stuart Evans ...
Shaky
Henry Mogatas ...
Chas
Victor Cowie ...
Maddin Sr.
Herdis Maddin ...
Grandma
Marion Martin ...
Mrs. Maddin
Aurum McBride ...
Baby
Bernard Lesk ...
Stickboy
Erin Hershberg ...
Customer / Stylist
Erika Rintoul ...
Customer
Edit

Storyline

It's time for hockey! There's no telling what will happen when the Winnipeg Maroons' own star player Guy becomes embroiled in the twisted lives of Meta, a vengeful Chinoise, and her hairdresser/abortionist mother Liliom. Innocent Veronica, caught in the middle, is treated to both services! Meanwhile poor, dithering, cowardly Guy can only stand by and watch. Written by Anony-Moose

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 December 2004 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Cowards Bend the Knee  »

Filming Locations:


Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,030, 15 August 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$22,940, 22 August 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Alice Krige was Maddin's first choice to play Liliom, but was unable to appear in the film due to an illness. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
a masterpiece of the bizarre
20 February 2017 | by See all my reviews

By turns a dark comedy, horror film, Gothic love story, and heartbreaking drama, "Cowards Bend the Knee" is a magnificent carnival of the bizarre. It carries the typical Guy Maddin style, which imitates silent, experimental cinema-normally mixing it with dark humor and surprising poetry. In this film, Maddin uses his style to the best of its ability by a forming a unique, genre bending masterwork of the avant garde. Mixing slapstick, sex, and scares Maddin creates an otherworldly and wholly surreal experience around a wacky plot that involves revenge, decapitated hands, hockey, abortion, and a fake breast.

Sounds weird, right? Well, it is. It really, really is.

...and for fans of weird, surreal cinema it's a real treasure. I found myself laughing and shaking during this wild feast for the eyes. It has its moments of disorientation and confusion, but within those moments lies a deep and subtle beauty. Guy Maddin is similar to Jim Jarmusch because his films are like cinematic poems, but while Jarmusch seems to be making beat poetry, Maddin makes completely off the wall, experimental poetry!


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 10 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Best of 2017: Our Favorite Movie and TV Stills

Take a look at our favorite movie and TV stills from the past year. Spot any of your faves?

Browse the Best of 2017