Shutter Island – Movie Review

‘Shutter Island’ released few months back, but I held back viewing it earlier as I had read the book it is based on by Dennis Lehane. Here is my Book Review.

The reason I had delayed primarily was that I wanted to ‘forget’ the book and then watch the movie without getting influenced. However, now I know that the book is not easy to forget. The movie is a faithful adaptation of the book and tries its best to live up to the standards of the book. Director Martin Scorcese and actor Leonardo Dicaprio tries to justify the book as much as the medium of cinema permits.

The movie follows the complex storyline almost as faithfully as the book. Leonardo Dicaprio is brilliant as Teddy Daniels and Mark Ruffalo fulfills the role of his partner Chuck. But Ben Kingsley as Dr. Crawly is superbly cast and you cannot imagine anyone else. The haunting mysterious island is one of the characters of the movie and it is certainly very well shot and presented. The background music at some points define the stormy atmosphere of the film.

Although I have to admit that knowing the ‘twist’ in the movie because of reading the book doesn’t help much as that is the problem with suspense novels. Perhaps I would have enjoyed the movie more if I had NOT read the book and didn’t know about what was to come.

If you have not seen this movie or read the boom then please do so. Watch the movie for superb acting and directing skills, witty dialogues and haunting atmosphere. The book can be read for finer details of the plot.

My Ratings : 8/10 . Do not delay watching it

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Inception – Cinema Extraordinaire –

Every few years a movie comes along which not only defies  the norm but creates and entire new genre. It becomes and experience, an event in one’s life. In last few years you could say there were movies like Matrix and recently Avatar which did this and gave us some unthinkable concepts and gave a cerebral experience worth remembering to its viewers. It gave us fresh thoughts and allowed us to think not only out of the box but way out of anything we would have thought otherwise. Inception is one such movie.

In the days of old movies being rehashed, remakes of old classics, superhero tales and not-so-original concepts here is a concept which is truly out of this world. Actually the concept of dreams, dream manipulation, sub-conscious mind and sharing of dreams is something many of us think about while sitting alone and pondering over something but nobody had dared to think the way Christopher Nolan does in his super mind blowing, movie Inception.

There are movies in which people go without any expectations and then enjoy the film, but here is a movie where i challenge you to go with as many expectations as you have and you will still feel that the movie matches your demands.

The movie’s plot is well, simple, but told in a complex way but not complex enough not to be understood. The movie has the protagonist and his team trying to enter the mind of person, by entering his dreams, his sub-conscious thoughts and planting or ‘incepting’ an idea so that he believes that the idea is his own. Actually the director explains every little details of what is going on and what is about to happen and almost spoon feeds the viewers.

The film has a an ensemble caste lead brilliantly by Leonardo Di caprio, who has mastered the art of playing a psychological wreck. Other caste members Joseph Gordon Hewitt, Ken Watanbe, Tom Hardy, Ellen Page and Marion Cotillard as Leo’s dead wife play their part perfectly well. The director of the movie is the real hero and the screenplay and editing has to be the best for the year, probably several years. The razor sharp editing, mind blowing visual effects and superb background score helps to create a thrilling atmosphere for the film. Hans Zimmer’s background score is exceptional and heightens the mood of the film at every stage, especially in the last 30 minutes when you have dreams within dreams within dreams unfolding.

The visual effects are truly the best and the slow-mo scenes in which the van jumps in the river, to the Parisian street folding itself and houses collapsing, people fighting in zero gravity are truly spellbinding. The last half an hour where the director  plays around with laws of time and physics is captivating and is spectacular to say the least.

The movie makes you sit up and think, are we all real? or are well living a big dream created by the best architect known by the mankind, GOD ? Are we all projections of our true selves and is the only way out of this dream is death???

The movie is definitely the finest action blockbuster of recent times. The movie isn’t fool-proof and does have some loopholes but you can safely ignore all of them because it is an experience every movie lover should have. It is one of those landmark films that you’ll remember for times to come. Other movie makers, eat your heart out, but all the awards are going to this movie.

My Ratings: 9.5/10 –  Brilliant ! Mindblowing !  Do Not miss it for anything.

Inception Trailer

The Movie I am excited about starring Leonardo Dicaprio and from Christopher Nolan, the director of Dark Knight and Memento. The movie releases worldwide on July 16, 2010

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Books I Read: Shutter Island – Dennis Lehane

Few months back browsing on some Movie site and reading the upcoming movies one of the names I saw was ‘Shutter Island’ starring Leonardo Dicaprio and directed by Martinc Scorcese. I then realised that it must have been based on the book I owned but hadnt yet had chance to read it. My hunch was right, the movie is based on the thriller by Dennis Lehane. Dennis Lehane has written quite a few decent books including Mystic River, Gone Baby Gone etc. Even the movie based on the above books were brilliant, atleast ‘Mystic River’ was. Now, I had to read Shutter Island before watching the movie.

Shutter Island – Paperback Cover

The story is set in 1954 in North Eastern America, mainly Boston and an island near it namely Shutter Island which houses a federal institution for the criminally insane. U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels and his partner, Chuck Aule, are called in to investigate an escape of a female patient. The facility is run by suspicious Dr. Cawly. You soon realize that there is more to this institution then we think. Teddy believes that an arsonist is hiding in the facility and Chuck suspects that patients are used as guinea pigs in trying out mental treatment. Soon the hunter becomes the hunted.

The books keeps you hooked to it and the case of missing prisoner and various codes leading to her makes you read it at a stretch. But there are more twists and turns in the story, some of which are expected and some of which are ‘out of the blue’. All of these keep the readers guessing right till the end. Of course in the end when everything is explained, you do realize that not everything was what it seemed while reading.

Quite a fun read and would recommend to anyone who loves thrillers. My Ratings  – 7/10

Now, to the movie. The movie has released in USA and has got quite varied reviews. Waiting for its release here in India. Hopefully the team of  Scorcese and Leo wouldnt disappoint me and film would live up to the book.