Movie Review: Shutter Island

Posted on July 12, 2010 in Media

By Shashank Saurav:

When it comes to psychological thrillers that can capture your imagination with mind-boggling action and nonpareil suspense, nothing beats the combination of Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese. Add Ben Kingsley to this and you have a movie that not only fascinates and enthralls but also keeps you on the edge of your seat. Shutter Island is one such film that is notches above the average psychological thriller. This movie comes as a refreshing change to the viewers after the 3-D technology and computer generated graphics spawned so many action flicks in the last few months.

The drama set in 1954 takes place on a remote island called Shutter Island. It serves as an institution for the most dreaded and dangerous criminals especially those having mental problems. Federal Marshal Teddy Daniels (DiCaprio) and his new partner Chuck Aule, from Seattle come to the island to investigate the disappearance of a prisoner Rachel Solando who is convicted on the charge of drowning her three children.

Teddy has been pushing for an assignment on the island for personal reasons but as the film proceeds he starts wondering whether he has been sent to the island as part of a surreptitious plot being carried out by the doctors. Although he is unable to access records, he figures out that something unethical and sinister is happening under cover. As he delves deeper, a storm hits the island and all channels of communication are cut off, thus ensuring that both Marshals are stuck there. It then becomes a struggle to survive while maintaining sanity at the same time.

All actors play their parts convincingly. However, Kingsley and Leonardo stand out in their roles, one as the perpetrator of evil and the other as a shrewd yet perplexed man. The mysterious characters, murky atmosphere and unnatural events all manage to hold your attention. The cinematographer deserves a special mention for setting the mood perfectly. The locations are also fabulous reminding us of the 1950’s with an occasional glimpse of the turbulent sea and dimly lit caves.

The film is a must watch for fans of this genre. If you have seen other DiCaprio movies, then his versatility will really impress you. In every film he manages to grab a different role and then plays it admirably, proving that he continues to remain the paragon of flawless performances. The highlight of the movie is the deviously and meticulously planned ending which is highly unexpected and one of the best in recent times.

The writer is a correspondent of Youth Ki Awaaz