Guy Maddin

Canada 100 min Fiction


Careful is a movie constructed around sound. In Tolzbad, the Bavarian town where the story is set, children are taught not to speak any louder than whispers, as loud words could cause deadly landslides. Hence the title of the picture, being ‘careful’ transformed into an imposition, in the name of survival. So, the characters move in whispers, like their desires, obsessions and fatal decisions. These whispers become secrets which, in turn, are revelations at the mercy of the wind, which carries them from one house to another among the town’s Alpine peaks. Of course, the secret, which forms the nucleus of the film, is the most terrible act a man can commit: incest. Johann and Grigorss are two brothers that are about to finish school. The former is engaged, but one night he has an erotic dream about his mother Zenaida and decides to take his own life. The tragedy unfolds out of his death and awakens on the screen the Canadian’s most constant obsessions: the femme fatale, the dead father, cowardice and the family unit as the primary structure of repression. Maddin’s first ever colour and spoken feature makes for quite an oedipal melodrama. 


Guy Maddin

(Winnipeg, 1956) He studied economics at the University of Winnipeg. Maddin is an installation artist, screenwriter, cinematographer and filmmaker. He has also mounted numerous live performance versions of his films around the world, featuring live music, sound effects, singing and narration. Since 2011 he has collaborated with Galen Johnson and Evan Johnson under the banner of Development Ltd., their Winnipeg-based filmmaking collective.

Filmography: The Green Fog (2017), Accidence (2017), Seances (2016), Bring Me the Head of Tim Horton (2015, D'A 2016), The Forbidden Room (2015, D'A 2015) Keyhole (2011), My Winnipeg (2007, D'A 2011), Brand Upon the Brain! (2006, D'A 2011), The Saddest Music in the World (2003, D'A 2011), Dracula, Pages From a Virgin's Diary (2002, D'A 2011), Twilight of the Ice Nymphs (1997, D'A 2011), Archangel (1990, D'A 2011)

Guy Maddin

Film information

Director: Guy Maddin
Script: George Toles
Contact: Winnipeg Film Group
With: Kyle McCulloch, Gosia Dobrowolska, Sarah Neville, Brent Neale
Country: Canada
Year: 1990
Format: Digital
Length: 100 min
Edition: 2011