by Molly McKenna
After several delays that heightened anticipation for the film before
it even hit the screen, Martin Scorsese's newest mystery thriller,
Shutter Island, finally makes its debut this weekend. The film, set in
1954, follows US Marshall Teddy Daniels and partner Chuck Aule (played
by Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo) as they investigate the
disappearance of a prisoner of Shutter Island, a mental institution
for the criminally insane. But things go south when Daniels finds out
that shady things are happening on the island, and it becomes apparent
that he may never get off the island.
Shutter Island certainly delivers as a haunting psychological
thriller. From the moment Daniels arrives on the island, you get the
feeling that you can't trust anyone. As more about the history of the
island and its residents becomes apparent, you realize that Daniels
got more than he bargained for with this investigation. At almost 2
hours and 20 minutes, Shutter Island does feel long, but the countless
plot twists will make you want to keep your bathroom breaks to a
Shutter Island is beautiful aesthetically;
spooky buildings that set you on edge from the beginning, Scorsese
delivers a period thriller that is as beautiful as it is entertaining.
However, the film seems to take itself too seriously at times.
Scorsese ineffectively tries to force on the audience a personal
connection with Daniels with lengthy dream sequences and flashbacks;
however, the character is carried by DiCaprio's fine performance as
the confused but inquisitive Marshall. Though the dialogue sometimes
felt forced or stilted, the spooky supporting cast, with Ben Kingsley
as the head of the island and Michelle Williams as Daniel's haunting
former wife, helps the pace along enough to keep the interest.
In all, while not perfect, Shutter Island is an entertaining
commercial thriller that will keep you guessing.