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Review of Shutter Island

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What happens when you realize whatever you know and believe in, is nothing but a figment of your imagination? What happens when the difference between surreal and real starts diminishing? What happens when you find yourself stuck in a mental asylum located on a deserted island with no where to go and no one to trust, not even your own instincts!

Oscar winning filmmaker Martin Scorsese reteams with his muse Leonardo DiCaprio in one of the most pulsating and mind-boggling suspense thrillers of all time ‘Shutter Island’.

Two U.S. marshals, Teddy Daniels (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo) are summoned to a remote island ‘Shutter Island’, meant for the criminally insane, to investigate the mysterious disappearance of one of the patients who also happens to be a murderer. Dr Cawley (Ben Kingsley) head psychiatrist of the mental asylum lends a helping hand to the two in their investigation.

As Teddy and Chuck begin their investigation, they realize there’s more to the island and its inhabitants than meets the eye. Every step the two take towards solving the mystery that grips the shutter island, they find themselves tangled in a dangerous and twisted tale of shock and despair that seems far from real. How the two unleash the appalling truth and struggle to stay alive in a hope that they would manage to get out of the horrifying ‘Shutter Island’ one day, forms the story.

Shutter Island will remind you a lot of Memento, in terms of its treatment and story progression. Shutter Island too keeps shuttling between past and present and thus real and unreal. Scorsese brilliantly plays his cards when it comes to story telling as he unravels the plot in a way which forces a viewer to sub consciously strive hard to solve the mystery himself as he sees the events unfold onscreen. The way Scorsese orchestrates each character in the film is brilliant, no one is quite who they seem. The film sends chills down your spine with every scene and can well be tagged as Scorsese’s brand of psychological horror.

The open ended climax is baffling and one of the most ambiguous endings you might see in ages but it’s totally worth the build-up. This very reason elevates the film to a different league when compared to films from the same genre.

Writer Laeta Kalogridis deserves a standing ovation for penning a nail-biting tight screenplay, full of double-crossing twists & turns, revelations and thrills that will not let you bat an eyelid even once.

A superb background score perfectly maintains the sombre & haunting mood of the film. Scorsese’s film manages to keep you on the edge of your seat, thanks to an intense performance by a brooding Leonardo DiCaprio and a faintly wicked Sir Ben Kingsley. Leonardo DiCaprio essays the complex role of a man, who is haunted by the ghosts of his past while he is forced to live yet another nightmare in the form of Shutter Island. Your heart reaches out for his character and his dilemmas. Mark Ruffalo plays his part well.

If you are intrigued by gripping and intense psychological thrillers, Shutter Island is an absolute must watch. Martin Scrosese, once again proves he is a master of his craft. Ironically, this one’s way scarier than another horror release of this week, ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’!
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Added by Rihan
6 years ago on 6 September 2010 00:54



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