Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Summary: Federal Marshalls Teddy Daniels (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo) investigate the mysterious disappearance of a female patient at Shutter Island, a mental asylum in New England. During their stay the Marshalls discover things are not what they seem especially in Daniels opinion. Daniels is hell bent on uncovering the truth about the inner workings of the asylum and its faculty.
Plot (B): When I first saw the preview a few months ago I had no interest in seeing it. However, after walking out of the theater I am happy with what I saw. The plotline is interesting but there are several back stories and names that can confuse viewers- so pay attention. At some point in the middle of the movie I asked myself “Where is this going?” “Is this another fucking dream sequence? I didn’t know I was watching The Soprano’s.” There was a sense of repetitiveness that started to frustrate me; however that changed during the movie’s climax. I have to say I really liked the pay-off and it was worth the wait. Shutter Island is a movie worth seeing, but you may have to see it twice because you’ll probably miss certain things.
Action (N/A): What little action there is doesn’t merit a grade. I’m not trashing this part of the film it’s not that type of movie. This is a film where the action takes place on a mental level rather than the physical.
Acting & Dialogue (B+): As always DiCaprio delivers a stellar performance. His character is serious, highly intelligent, but also troubled, haunted, and short fused making him a person not to fuck with. As the movie progresses DiCaprio’s intensity increases thus adding more suspense. Ben Kingsley, Max von Sydow, and Mark Ruffalo provide strong supporting roles as well. Seeing four such talented actors work together is definitely a treat. Michelle Williams and Jackie Earle Haley who have small but important roles are also effective assets to the Scorsese arsenal.
Sex Appeal (6-7): For all you Leo fanatics out there don’t get too excited Shutter Island isn’t going to deliver in that department. There are no shirtless scenes or intimate close ups, which would make you all excited. However, his character does deal with so much emotional pain from past events causing viewers to sympathize and pity him thus turning him into the sexy tortured soul.
Director (B+): This is Martin Scorsese’s first major film since 2006’s The Departed and I have to say he did a damn good job. Is it better than The Departed? No fucking way. However, you will leave the theater happy. This is Scorsese’s and DiCaprio’s fourth film together and I’m more than willing to go see another ten films they do together. DiCaprio is Scorsese’s new DeNiro, which isn’t new news. Scorsese brings out the very best in DiCaprio. They are very familiar with each other’s styles and if they continue down this path you can expect great things. What I really liked was the dark Jaws- like theme music that resonated throughout the film. It set the tone and direction of story. Scorsese always does an excellent job pairing the story with music.