Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Shutter Island in 175 Words

(SORTA SPOILERS AHEAD) There's plenty of masterful (mis)direction going on, but it's a lotta sound and a lotta fury that doesn't add up to much in the end. Marty got me thinking for long stretches that it wasn't what I thought it was that was going on (and what I thought was going on I thought was going on from the first trailer I saw), but then... well it was what I thought was going on, and having the rug pulled out from under you only to have that same rug stuffed down your throat isn't the most appealing sensation. Still, it's not worth throwing out the entire film because of a disappointing finale. There's goodishness before it, and there's also pleasure to be had watching a Master riff on well-worn shenanigans. We've seen the story before, but we've never seen Marty tell it before. That jazz. But it's still a let down. You just never much care, and all the hail and hurricanes and swarms of rats he throws at us can't really suspend that disbelief.


Val said...

If it'll save you some reading time I finished Dennis Lehane's book a while ago and got angry for the exact same reasons. It was an ebook too so I didn't even get the satisfaction of chucking it against the wall.

My BF guessed the ending the way you did and when I confirmed it for him he basically said, "there, I just saved myself 10 bucks."

This will be basic cable kind of fare, I'm guessing.

gregorybrown said...

My impression reading the book was that the ending was more ambiguous than what happens in the film. The possibility of a conspiratorial coverup was there...I think. this isn't my favorite Lehane story, so maybe i read it carelessly.

Jason Adams said...

I thought for a minute that it might be left vague, it had the possibility there right up until the almost-end, but I think it is ultimately snuffed out to the film's detriment. I liked the conspiracy angle, I found myself getting really involved in it mentally once Patty Clarkson showed up, but I really don't think the movie leaves room for it in the end. Sadly. And I really did't need the extended flashback scene of What Went Down with his wife and him.

I do still have some questions about little moments that are off in the movie - there's this shot of a glass of water disappearing and reappearing in someone's hands that I haven't been able to figure out and in the end really doesn't seem to make sense to me.

I dunno. Even besides the mystery stuff which def. picked up here and there and got briefly interesting, I just never felt attached enough to anybody to ultimately give a hoot.

Val said...

On another ambiguous ending note, Lehane is writing a sequel to 'Gone, Baby, Gone' that I am not too sure I'm happy about. The ending to that movie is so ripe for debate I'm thinking expounding on it is not in the original story's best interests, no matter how many years have supposedly passed.

Of course, maybe I just fear it will be too utterly depressing.

Anonymous said...

I agree with everything posted. For a more entertaining thriller in general, beautifully atmospheric, and just well acted good fun, head uptown or downtown to see The Ghost Writer. Plus you get Ewan shirtless.