Leonardo DiCaprioShutter Island, Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio's fourth movie together (after Gangs of New York, The Aviator and The Departed), is in cinemas everywhere from Friday. Based on a book by Dennis Lehane, it's a film brimming with cinematic references from the '50s and ripe with Scorsese's stylised touches. But is it worth seeing?

Find out what we think after the jump... img hspace="4" border="1" align="right" vspace="4" alt="Leonardo DiCaprio" id="vimage_1" src="http://www.blogcdn.com/blog.moviefone.com/media/2010/03/shutterisland_200x225.jpg" />Shutter Island (15)

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Ben Kingsley, Michelle Williams
Director: Martin Scorsese
Running time: 138 minutes
Trailer: Watch it here
Leonardo DiCaprio interview: Watch it here

The plot: For Scorsese and DiCaprio's fourth big-screen collaboration, Leo is a 1950s cop investigating an inmate's disappearance at an isolated high-security mental hospital. But as bad weather traps Teddy and his partner (Ruffalo) on Shutter Island, he becomes increasingly convinced that the Ashecliffe facility holds terrible secrets. The biggest secret of all is one that Teddy would never guess.

What's good about it? Unless you've read the Dennis Lehane novel on which it's based, you'll probably be genuinely bamboozled by an effectively mounted mystery that manages to sustain a tone of fevered intensity. As you'd expect from Scorsese, performances are top-notch, especially Ben Kingsley as the facility's deliciously ambiguous chief psychiatrist, by turns creepy and kindly.

What's not so good?
It's clear from the get-go that this film is withholding so much information, there's little point in trying to puzzle it out: best just to sit tight and wait for the secrets to unravel. As Teddy's mental state becomes more fractured, tormented by recollections of World War II concentration camps and increasingly susceptible to hallucinations featuring his dead wife (Williams, in a thankless role), DiCaprio struggles to hold the film's centre. It's not his fault; it's the material.

In a nutshell: What the majority have found captivating and intriguing, a minority have experienced as ever so slightly exasperating, finally losing patience with what is evidently the most unreliable of narrators. Our advice is just to submit to the film's off-kilter pleasures and Scorsese's bravura film-making craft. Fasten your seatbelts, everyone, it's going to get bumpy.

Rating: 6 out of 10.

categories Reviews