Monday, February 22, 2010


Review: Shutter Island
4.5 stars (out of 5)
By R. Kurt Osenlund

A twisty, psycho-paranoid thriller with Leonardo DiCaprio on camera and Martin Scorsese behind it, “Shutter Island” keeps you wondering which of two endings it's going to reach even as the answers are being provided. Adapted by Laeta Kalogridis from the novel by Dennis Lehane (“Mystic River”), it's the kind of convoluted mystery movie that takes great pride and delight in deceiving its audience. There are lots of movies like it, many of them prosaic and marked by foul superiority complexes (a recent example is the Hughes Brothers' “The Book of Eli”). But Scorsese doesn't simply mislead his viewers, yank out the rug, then cut and run. He fleshes out the film's twists, offering stirring, profound and thoroughly cinematic revelations, and his take on the material allows you to welcome the deception. His “Shutter Island” is what a lesser filmmaker's almost certainly wouldn't have been: a fun and focused exercise in artful manipulation.


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