We’re going to get right into it this time… The three of us, in a conversation regarding Shutter Island before it was released, predicted the main climactic twist, which lead to predicting a lot of what played out throughout the film. But it didn’t matter; it was engaging nonetheless.
There was not really anything Scorsese did wrong in his most recent endeavor based on the novel by Dennis Lehane. He really made this a masterpiece and will at the least get a Best Director nomination; and very probably take the win. From the opening scenes it was apparent this would become a treasure of cinematic brilliance likened to some of the Alfred Hitchcock classics. You really feel like you’re in a 1950’s movie theatre. The score itself made the movie, simplistic and powerful, and immersed the theatre in the dark, edgy, psychological scheme. In fact, we tried hard and couldn’t really find anything to complain about.
Gina: I could have done without the male wang.
Chad: I guess it added to the shock factor, but that is like an automatic half a star off.
Camera work really acted as a dimensional supporting role considering the mysterious feeling the island housed mental institution portrayed. The cinematography was stunning, and even though it was one of the most disturbingly creepy places I’ve seen, the landscape was beautiful to take in. Some scenes, while Teddy (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) is given free range to wander the island, evoked an emotion all their own with even the most simplistic approach reminiscent of Hitchcock’s greatest – climbing the tower stairs in Vertigo, the airplane scene of North By Northwest, or even the final scene braving the walk to the car surrounded by birds (do I have to name the movie?).
The entire cast as well was superb, from the institution nurses and guards to Ben Kingsley as one of the head doctors and Jackie Earle Haley (soon to be the new Freddy Kruger!) as the crazy convict/patient. Though the bottom of the bunch being Michelle Williams, not that she was terrible, but someone has to come in last.
Kevin: I would have to say the lazy eyed old crazy lady with the thin comb over from the preview had more of an impact on me than Williams. However, I am always in awe of the nuances DiCaprio brings to all his roles. I was not disappointed here.
Chad: I am continually impressed by Leo’s ability to cry [convincingly] on cue. And it was also Mark Ruffalo’s best performance since 13 Going On 30!
Gina: When Leo was in his suit he looked fatter. He must have gained weight while shooting.
Kevin: That was random.
So all in all, a wonderfully depicted novel to film that doesn’t disappoint from the widespread claims in the trailers, as well as staying true to being a psychological thriller without drifting into the horror genre. Though you would expect nothing less from the great team behind it.
Chad: Predictable, but it didn’t matter. 4.5 of 5 beers
Gina: Can we ever have HOT male nudity?!? 7.75 of 10 stars
Kevin: Bound to be a classic. 9 of 10 stars.
Combined Review: 8.6 of 10 stars