Saturday, August 7, 2010

A genuinely pictured madhouse mystery

Rating : 4.5/5

Finally had the guts to see it and it was worth it.
It takes place on an island (you guessed it: Shutter Island) where people who've been charged for different crimes and declared mentally deranged are being held and more or less treated. There, a "patient" is gone missing and thus a marshal (DiCaprio) and his partner (future Bruce Banner/Hulk in the Avengers Movie) come to the island in order to investigate the situation.
The set-up is very well drawn and the atmosphere is quite genuine with no useless exaggerations: on day light the place looks like any other hospital, but when it gets darker everything becomes gloomy, that is also when the tension starts to rise. The music and the colorful flashbacks have their own role in this, too.
The acting is solid in general (Leo and Ben Kingsley aka The Big Doctor Boss are the key elements the action is knitted around) and as the plot develops you become more and more connected to the main character and his beliefs, living the scenes as you where directly involved.
Even after seeing the movie twice (it enlightens details a lot) there are still some small loose ends that aren't put together and this would be the only downside of it.
Another great thing is that the movie develops a whole debate topic through is briliant last line, and there are not many films that do so recently.
Probably this years Oscar will have as main competitors Inception and Shutter Island, but my favorite still remains Inception because of the more brainy side of the mystery, its dynamics and....why not its SFX, even though the ounce of philosophy-related message is held by Shutter Island.

Clarifications/Questions??? - Spoiler Alert!!!

First, I would like to have your thoughts on one thing: my guess is that at the end he's still aware of his true identity (Andrew) but plays along so he would get lobotomized as a sort of self punishment and escape; what do you think?
The boat trip at the beginning happens in his head or it was for real?
It is stunning how deranged people can point out the truth so easily: Ward C scene with the "Roarshach" guy...

Personal thoughts(more general than movie-related):

1. That was really one fucking ugly tie
2. Is it me or Leo has become a magnet for parts of husbands with troubled wives(Revolutionary Road, Inception, Shutter Island)? Anyway, he does it very well
3.It seams that good/interesting movies come from worlds where anything can happen like a madman's mind or a dream...


  1. What do you mean: "had the guts"? I thought it wasn't all that bad... kinda liked it since i had no idea what to expect from the get-go *(did not read any synopsis or watch any trailers). Leo starting to lose the Titanic history... Thumbs up for that.

  2. i didn't have the guts because I was more or less aware of what it was about, so I needed psychological preparation (creepy mental institutions are not my thin); concerning Leo I think that "The beach" was his lowest point (I never watched Titanic and never will :p), but he already did other great movies: Catch me if you can, Blood Diamond, The Departed...

  3. being a well-trained skeptic, i thought that a movie with Leo would suck (i saw titanic - what has been seen cannot be unseen). so i gave it a shot at a friend's house (too bad we weren't at the cinema). it blew me away. a very well done movie. the actors were very good, the storyline not that intuitive (at least not until the 1st half of the movie :) ) and the movie had a nice, weird feeling. thumbs up for this 1. can't wait to see inception.