February 09, 2010

The Nation’s Third Oldest College Newspaper

Volume 80, Issue 11

Review: 'Shutter Island' - a movie full of twists

Photo courtesy of Wolf Gang

Photo courtesy of Wolf Gang

Lines of moviegoers rush into the cinema with grins upon their faces. Two hours later, the looks on their faces are that of surprise and astonishment. So, what compelled the sudden change? The audience had just viewed the epic new motion picture "Shutter Island."

Based on the best-seller by Dennis Lahane, "Shutter Island" reunites Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese and actor Leonardo DiCaprio to bring spectators an enthralling, twisted and riveting masterpiece.

Set in 1954, U.S. Marshall Teddy Daniels (DiCaprio), is sent on a journey to investigate the escape of a prisoner from a maximum security mental health prison situated in a remote location known as "Shutter Island." With the help of his partner, Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo), the two face remarkable challenges upon arrival - a significant one being the uncooperative staff at the prison.

Withheld records of a missing patient and other evidence lead Teddy to believe that the staff may be more involved than originally conceived. Determined to uncover what is being hidden, Teddy becomes even more drawn to the facility when he begins to envision haunted memories of a previous tragedy that occurred on the grounds. But nature turns against him when a violent hurricane rips through the island, releasing even more prisoners, and bringing about extreme disorder. In the chaos, however, Teddy and his partner are able to explore the parts of the facility that they were previously denied access to.

Could this be where the answer to their questions lies?

In "Shutter Island," Scorsese utilizes his art of visual effects to create a suspenseful atmosphere. The chilling lighting in the prison, disturbing screams heard throughout, and the contradiction of a helpful hospital suggests that there may just be more than meets the eye. As the story unfolds, the poignant characters instill a connection with the viewers that will string them right along. Strange encounters and unsettling events point viewers in one direction, what appears to be the right one, though they shouldn't assume anything. Right as the audience is left to devise their own predictions, the story nears an end and an unexplainable twist surfaces (one that is sure to leave your jaws on the ground).

So, what is the twist? I'll leave that for you to find out.

"Thought-provoking, creepy and shocking" were three words NU senior Stephanie Jarosz used to describe the film. "There were so many unexpected twists and turn; definitely one of my favorite movies. I'll definitely be seeing it again very soon."

This movie is a must-see for anyone who "likes to play detective" and will leave you on the edge of your seat. Pay close attention, keep an open conscious, and see if you can solve the mystery. But keep one thing in mind: "Nothing is ever what it seems to be."

The film also incorporates performances by Ben Kinsgley, Max von Sydow, and Michelle Williams.

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