Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Shutter Island

There's something unusual -- something barely noticeable -- about Shutter Island that sorta got under my skin and wouldn't ease up.

It was the look of the flick. During the first two hours, the cinematography is a real clue to the puzzle presented by this psychological thriller and crime story.

The light is unusual, the colors a bit too thick.

At first I guessed this was due to the story being set in the 1950s. DiCaprio would be doing a Cagney impression, I reasoned, with lots of long drags off a smoke and uses of the phrase: "Yeah, that's right. Ya see!"

But I was wrong.

Scorsese's flick, in which U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels investigates the disappearance of a psychiatric patient from an institution, is more complex and less obvious that one might anticipate. DiCaprio is fine, and co-star Mark Ruffalo is (as usual) terrific. But it's the feel of this movie, highlighted by Scorsese's photographic style, that makes this picture worth seeing.

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