Shutter Island

R 2009 | Thriller

Director Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio join cinematic forces for a fourth time to make an intense thriller out of this best-selling novel. Leo plays a U.S. Marshal (circa 1954) sent to a mysterious island insane asylum to investigate the disappearance of an escaped murderess. And before you can say "conspiracy", the clues suggest a sinister plot involving the asylum's doctors and their radical, unethical treatments. As the staff gets creepier, and a dangerous hurricane gets closer, Leo struggles to unravel one crazy plot twist after another -- and to keep from going cuckoo himself! With a pulpy plot and stellar cast (including Mark Ruffalo and Sir Ben Kingsley), Shutter Island is as "A-list" as a "B-movie" gets.

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Top 10 Fun Facts

  1. Robert Downey Jr. and Josh Brolin were considered for the role of Chuck Aule, but Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese settled on Mark Ruffalo. I'd be cool with being settled on by DiCaprio and Scorsese.
  2. Thirty-six year old Argentinean filmmaker Celina Murga shadowed director Martin Scorsese during the filming of Shutter Island as part of The Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. If that wasn't unusual enough, a report of her experiences were commissioned and published by British magazine, Total Film.
  3. According to Celina Murga's article, director Martin Scorsese likes to cover all his bases so he demands something different from each of his actor's performance in every take he shoots. This makes work harder for the actors, but easier for Scorsese when he gets into the editing room. And the director is boss.
  4. When Brad Pitt's production company, Plan B Entertainment, first set up shop, Shutter Island was considered a possible project for him. After the success of the company's first venture, The Departed, a pragmatic Pitt decided to reteam Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese for this project.
  5. A trip through security at Boston's Logan Airport turned out to be a very expensive one for the filmmakers when a scene from Shutter Island was damaged. The actors had to be recalled to reshoot the scene.
  6. Celina Murga explained that Martin Scorsese borrowed from movie classics The Shining and Psycho in the making of Shutter Island. He wanted to create a "sense of ambiguity and alienation" so the audience would be brought into the nightmare that was the main character's reality. Not quite the feel good movie of the year.
  7. In the Total Film article, Scorsese claims that the exact spot in which a character glances towards the camera can substantially change the relationship between the character and the audience so sometimes he will adjust the camera by mere millimeters. Talk about detail oriented.
  8. There's a reason Ben Kingsley's character is always shrouded in smoke - the filmmakers thought it added an air of mystery and little bit of malevolence to the character.
  9. A variety of locations were scouted for the film Shutter Island, including Connecticut and the Canadian province of Nova Scotia. Filmmakers finally decided to shoot in Massachusetts, which made sense since the film was actually set in that particular state.
  10. Scorsese used Orson Welles' The Trial as a stylistic influence - note the similar use of corridors, tunnels, low ceilings, and angular lenses.
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