Shutter Island

Shutter Island

Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, and Ben Kingsley
Directed by Martin Scorsese
Rated R for disturbing violent content, language and some nudity
Appropriate for ages 17+

    In 1954, U.S. Marshall Teddy Daniels travels to a hospital for the criminally insane on the very remote Shutter Island to search for a missing inmate.  When he finds the staff there to be less than cooperative, he attempts to investigate without their help, until he discovers that they might have lured him there to the island for some other sinister purpose. 

    There are so many things to like about this movie that it’s hard to pick where to start.  I think the obvious first praise has to go to DiCaprio and the rest of the magnificent cast for their performances.  This film gathered some of the top talent in Hollywood, which really does make a huge difference with such challenging material.

    And then there is the craftsmanship of Scorsese who is really stretching out with this picture that looks and feels more like a modern-day Hitchcock or Kubrick picture than something he is capable of making this well.  At times it gives the real sense of a horror film, but at heart it is a psychological thriller that really plays with your head.  Scorsese’s touch is straight forward in the real world and fantastical with the dream sequences and when the two begin to become entangled, the movie really pulls you in and doesn’t release.

    Most importantly here is the story by Dennis Lehane (Mystic River), with screenplay by Laeta Kalogridis.  With so many films of late trying to fool you, you kind of know when you’re up against one that isn’t on the level.  I have been trying to figure this one out since I saw the trailer, and although I kept guessing till the end, I was blown away, so much so that I can’t wait to see it again, just to see where I missed the clues.  My suggestion – just enjoy the bumpy ride and don’t get your brain all worked up trying to guess what it’s all about.  A