The House That Spades is a 2014 American Period Piece Thriller drama film written and directed by Darren Aronofsky starring Jessica Alba, Samuel L. Jackson, Billy Crystal, Marcia Strassman, Gerard Butler, Joseph-Gordon Levitt and Emma Stone.

The film secured three Oscars: 1. For Best Picture -2014, 2. For Best Actress: Jessica Alba and 3. For Best Supporting Actress: Emma Stone as well as two other Oscar nominations: 1. For Best Score and 2. For Best Original Screenplay.

The film has secured two BAFTA nominations and a win, three emmys and much critical acclaim.

It explores themes of insanity, disillusionment and psychadelia all which can be found in Aronofsky's acclaimed Oscar nominated 2001 picture Requiem For A Dream.

The film received an advanced pre-screening at the Los Angeles Film Festival and Cairns Film Festival.

The idea came to Aronofsky as a bizarre dream in 2005 which he wrote down and expanded upon over the years until ultimatley in 2011 he decided on pursuing as a film project.

The film's storyline like Aronofsky's dream is set in the 1960's.


It's 1969 and broke, barely stable Jeanine Bretwurst (Jessica Alba) of Chicago City heads out to rural Baltimore to take up the job position as the primary carer for a mentally ill, seriously disturbed 19 year old girl Whitney Addison (Emma Stone).

The banker father Whitmore Addison (Billy Crystal) is a reclusive, cautious and secretive man and his wife Helena (Marcia Strassman) is a broken, wine addicted pianist struggling to get her music career off the ground.

Jeanine settles in and at first struggles to deal with the torments of paranoid schitzophrenic Whitney but soon comes to find herself delving into her mind and begins to learn about the family's tragic history.

Jeanine's ex-fiance Michael (Joseph-Gordon Levitt) then appears in town and the two reconcile and Jeanine's stability then begins to return leaving her prone and vulnerable to Whitney again.

One night when Mr and Mrs. Addison are out and Jeanine is tasked with taking care of Whitney for the night she invites Michael over and after the two engage in sexual intercourse Whitney assaults him.

She bites into his neck and he is rushed to hospital.

The Addison's along with Jeanine create a cover story and instead of Jeanine being relieved of duties Whitmore reveals that when Whitney was fifteen and had her sanity she caught her fiance cheating with the house's interior decorator and their mechanic.

In an uncontrollable rage Whitney murdered them brutally and the beautiful housemaid who was present at the time.

Whitmore tells they covered up the murders with the mechanic being in a secret relationship with the beautiful housemaid and discovered that she was having an affair with the interior decorator and murdered them both in a jealous rage before committing suicide.

Whitmore concludes his story with Whitney having a complete mental breakdown and believing the walls were talking to her, that there were the spirits of the mechanic, housemaid and decorator in the house and the house contained a passage between the world of the living (lies) and the world of the dead (truth).

They then had to declare their daughter insane and decided on having her hospitalized at home.

Jeanine however that night comes to Jeanine drugged and apologizes and states she didn't mean to do what she did and they made her do it, so she would see the truth and that he lies, he lies.

Jeanine then begins to investigate into Whitmore Addison and discovers letters he had stashed away written to the beautiful housemaid and then comes to Whitney stating she knows she isn't insane and wants to know what to do and that she wants to talk to them.

Whitney then opens a passage through the first floor rumpus room and whisks Jeanine into a passage beyond space and time and takes her through the painful memories of hers as a little girl witnessing her father's affair.

Jeanine begins to become disillusioned and disorientated because of her trip and starts to fear she will end up like Whitney.

She seeks council with the local town psychiatrist Cooper Clancy (Samuel L. Jackson) after she visits Michael in the hospital and he is hijacked by the spirit of the mechanic.

He upon hearing of what she has to say about believing Mr. Whitmore had an affair advises her to go with what Whitney is showing her and prescribes an experimental drug to relieve the hallucinatory problems.

From there Jeanine soon comes full circle and discovers the beautiful housemaid was murdered by Whitmore's wife Helena and Mr. Whitmore himself and buried on the hilltops not far off their property.

The housemaid had come to have an affair of her own with the decorator and the mechanic had payed witness resulting in their execution.

The spirits of the three had then ripped a hole into this world allowing Whitney to enter their astral plane and discover the truth.

Her mind however was too weak to withstand the information and do anything about it and ultimatley was driven insane.

Jeanine however plans on setting everything right.

She soon is subjected to nightly hijacking by the beautiful houseamaid's ghost who sets about revealing that they weren't the first victims, and she was not the first lustful affair victim of Whitmore Addison that there was another young girl.


  • Jessica Alba as Jeanine Bretwurst
  • Samuel L. Jackson as Cooper Clancy
  • Billy Crystal as Whitmore Addison
  • Marcia Strassman as Helena Addison
  • Joseph-Gordon Levitt as Michael Tambuc
  • Emma Stone as Whitney Addison
  • Vanessa Hudgens as Tamarra Syncott
  • Robert Sheehan as Lewie Turner
  • Anthony Andrews as Gordie Turner
  • Anna Maria Horsford as Wendela Syncott
  • Gerard Butler as Officer Johnathen Lockwood
  • Jason Clarke as Officer Mendell Pritchard
  • Viveca Paulin as Linda Lockwood
  • Noah Taylor as "The Mechanic"
  • Lionel D. Carson as Sheriff Ross Syncott
  • Thomas Jane as "The Designer"
  • Paget Brewster as "The Beauty"


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