Curtis is a good man, a kind hearted husband and a good father, but when he starts to experience bad dreams and hallucinations, he worries whether or not the mental illness that has plagued his mother for as long as he can remember, has finally found a new host in him. Curtis seeks medical help as well as counselling, but no matter what he tries, he can’t help the fact that he feels he needs to built a storm shelter, just in case. This elaborate and expensive storm shelter in his backyard threatens not only his marriage, his job and his sanity, but it also threatens to tear his family apart. However, Curtis knows that he needs to do this, to save his daughter, his wife and hopefully himself.
Take Shelter is an enticing film that will keep viewers on the edge of their seat as they try to figure out what will happen next, but the audience need to ready themselves beforehand for a slightly anticlimactic film. The saying: “Too little too late” describes Take Shelter perfectly, we have a thrilling plot all the way, but the lack of anything happening of any substantial worth, merely teases the viewer and they are left wanting and unsatisfied at the end. There are disturbing scenes though, but for too long we are teased with a psychological illness until the viewer starts to believe that perhaps that would have been a better direction for the writers of the film… It’s not completely bad though, of course the small town “apocalyptic” films is always a hit with audiences, but with ideas running out, one has to wonder how filmmakers will come up with something original. This is what the makers of Take Shelter tried to do and although in some ways they succeeded, I can’t help but say that there is something lacking about it. It could have been one of the greats, quite honestly, but there was just something lacking and sadly I have to say that The Happening was better than this one, which isn’t saying much.
Perhaps I am judging it too harshly and I’m sure that many people would completely disagree with this review, because some critics have called this a gem. I concur that there are elements to Take Shelter that is remarkable, the build-up is intense, but the whole film is a build-up and that is where it fails for me.
Starring Michael Shannon (Bad Boys 2, Vanilla Sky), Jessica Chastain (The Help, Lawless) and written and directed by Jeff Nicols (Mud, Shotgun Stories), one cannot help but label it as being overrated and over-hyped. In my opinion, rent it or wait for it to be broadcast on TV. This isn’t the type of film you’d re-watch often and not worth giving out your hard-earned cash to have in your collection.
However, to those who are interested in getting their hands on it anyway, you can do so by clicking on the image or on the handy LoveFilm link.