Shutter Island

“Shutter Island”



So there is the fact that of course this film is staggering when you consider all the elements that came together. Like for instance, that of Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo. They both look like are overacting, but in different ways. And these two ways are distinct. And important. Then there are the menacing doctors of the film. Just why are they menacing. And why seemingly to DiCaprio? Is it because he was assigned to investigate a disappearance at Shutter Island?  Perhaps, but than why do they not appear to treat his partner, Ruffalo, in quite the same way?

Then there’s the look Bob Richardson assigns the film. The colors, the pacing, the camera movements. It is dreamlike while at the same time, realistic in a film noir kind of way. One thing it never seems to be is quite right. Quite real.

And we know this is a Martin Scorsese picture. And he shaped the performances and he worked closely with Richardson (at least one would assume he does these things as one of the most heralded directors; my only knowledge of him behind the scenes is that he was often wandering with his own camcorder during the shooting of “Last Temptation of Christ.”)

It has been said that Scorsese has gone sick with money. Fresh from his Oscar winning “The Departed,” he and his new DeNiro (you must have a De or Di in front of your name to really form a strong partnership with Marty; Keitel excluded) were given way too much money and power and control and…

And what do I think? I think the film, as I said is staggering. I think it is impossibly well made and thought out. I think that it is a minor masterpiece of this sub-genre of horror/thriller in which I believe it resides.

I also believe it comes much too late. I want a mystery dammit. I don’t know if you’ve seen the film, but the final act places it right in our latest of popular twist pictures; where the rug gets pulled out beneath you and you realize you can’t even trust the facts that you were given as such. Wowie! It is so common, that my girlfriend called it twenty minutes in. I shook my head. I didn’t want to believe it. Not Marty.

What I try to remember is that if this picture had come several years ago; it would be phenomenal. It is the best of its kind. Unfortunately, there are too many of its kind as of late, and I have seen them all. And I had seen this one last.

So, what do I think when I think of “Shutter Island?”  Well, I think it has some of the best stage management I have yet to see in modern cinema, of course.

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