Nicole Kidman didn't understand 'Stoker' when she first read the script.

The 45-year-old actress claims South Korean director Park Chan-wook's new psychological thriller is so layered and complex she had to re-read the script - which was penned by 'Prison Break' star Wentworth Miller - several times before tackling her role since it relies so heavily on atmosphere and intricate cinematic details.

Speaking at a US press conference, she explained: ''I had to read it a couple of times to understand it. It's got a lot of subtext and layers, so I just wanted to absorb what the feeling was. I think the strength of director Park is his atmosphere.

''There's not a lot of dialogue so the cinematic language of it has to be very strong. It was extraordinary how detailed he wanted everything to be. His use of colour and sound is all very specific and it's not by chance.''

The flame-haired star believes the poetic film - which also stars Matthew Goode and Mia Wasikowska - defies conventional genres and admits she had no idea what director Park intended to do with most of the shots until she saw the eerie finished product.

She said: ''I'm not sure at what genre it fits into, it's hard to define it. I was amazed at the filmmaking, you don't seen that kind of thing that often. It's very layered and the metaphors that he uses - the hair thing - I had no idea!

'He was just like, 'We're just going to shoot brushing your hair, then I was like, 'Ohh!' [when I saw the film]. It's really hard to do and not be pretentious. You're taught that cinema is the language of images, you really should be able to tell the story without words.''

'Stoker' hits cinemas on March 1.