Find the list here: The Top 250 Films List Total Films Watched: 250/250

Monday, 18 February 2013

#237 - 'Shutter Island' (2010)

"You're smarter than you look, Marshal. That's probably not a good thing."
- Rachel Solando.
U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels (Leonardo "We need to go deeper" DiCaprio) and his new partner Chuck Aule (Mark "I'm Always Angry" Ruffalo) arrive at Shutter Island which houses an institution for the mentally ill. They are investigating the disappearance of a patient called Rachel Solando, who is there because she drowned her three children. Their enquiries into the mysterious events reveal more about Teddy's past and things begin to unravel that make him question the real reasons why he is on the island.
Chuck and Teddy arrive at Shutter Island.
The island is eerie and its inhabitants are equally creepy. Ben Kingsley plays Dr. Cawley who runs the institution and seems pleasant enough at first. But then things begin to happen and he becomes less and less helpful to Teddy's investigation. Teddy starts to feel that everything is turning against him as the audience find out more about his past as a war veteran and the suspicious circumstances surrounding his own wife's death. Stylistically, the film is aesthetically pleasing. Repeated and apparently random shots are interspersed with the current narrative, until their relevance is later uncovered. Journeying through Teddy's memories and dreams gives director Martin Scorsese license to be creative. And it works really well.
Teddy and his wife in a dream.
I have seen this film a few times before. It is a good thriller and even when you know the ending, it still has rewatchability (if that's a word). I picked up on a few things that I have missed on previous viewings which shows that it is layered and cleverly put together. DiCaprio is good at showing the psychological issues that Teddy is going through and Ruffalo plays a great detective partner role. Even though I seem to remember the trailer made it look like a horror film, 'Shutter Island' is a psychological thriller with twists and turns, making the audience think along the way.
The missing patient Rachel Solando.

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