Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Take Shelter

Another day, another non-horror horror film.  Take Shelter is arty: let's get that out of the way. If arty is not your thing, if you only love films that have aliens or hot babes or gore, this film is not for you.  Directed by Jeff Nichols, Take Shelter stars Michael Shannon (also known as the most intense man in the world) as Curtis, a blue-collar kind of guy who begins to have visions of an apocalyptic event brought about by a great storm. 

This worries his family: loving and patient wife Samantha (played by Jessica Chastain, who apparently is in everything but I swear this is the first film I have seen her in), and daughter Hannah (Tova Stewart).  Not helping the situation is the fact that Hannah is deaf and the family can barely afford the care she needs.  When Curtis loses his job due to his erratic behavior, the ticking time bomb that is his mind goes off.

Curtis comes from a family with a history of mental illness.  His mother is schizophrenic.  Watching the film you are never sure if these "visions" are a product of his troubled mind or the real deal.  What is real is the problems they cause.  Take Shelter is a film about the fallout from a man losing his mind.  Not horror, although horrible things happen to this man and his family.

At least until the very end.  The final scene flips this film on its head and made me love it!  I won't, of course, give it away.  (It's really good.)

Michael Shannon is quickly becoming one of my favorite actors.  His performance in Bug was amazing (just try to ignore Ashley Judd.)  If you are a fan, see this film!  Just remember: arty, heavy drama.  Don't come yelling at me if you don't like it.

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