Shutter Island Close Analysis

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10 Closely Analysed Screens From Shutter Island.

Text of Shutter Island Close Analysis

Eerie Music:Eerie music here is used to highlight the woman and what she is doing. This could signify that she is important, however, we find out later that she's not. The eerie music creates tension and makes the audience feel uneasy. This creates an unsettling atmosphere, which leads to foreshadow the ending and also a lot of the action that takes place. Also, the fact that nothing happens at the end of this scene, puts us into a false sense of security believing that since nothing happened this time, nothing will happen next time, making everything a little unexpected.

Chiaroscuro:This is used on her face. This could symbolise the contrast in patients and the people who work there: how they're treated; what they are like; how they see themselves; how they see the world and how they see each other. It could also be used to symbolise the contrast between oneself, and the battles going on in ones subconscious, when suffering from a mental issue, for example, who Teddy thinks he is and who Teddy actually is.

Clothing:The clothing she is wearing are very old, and don't look very clean. This could be because of the murky grey colour all patients are made to wear, or because she is so mentally unwell that she is unable to look after herself properly. This could be backed up by the state of her hair on her head. The use of the colour grey connotes misery and depression. This could foreshadow the reasonings as to why Teddy Daniel's is being Teddy, and why he cannot see the truth about his past.

ECU/CU:A close up is used to focus all attention clearly on her. Despite the fact that she is, in the end, a red herring, she is shown to be important, and the line across her neck makes us wonder who she is, and what happened to her. This draws our attention away from the main plot slightly, and means that all of the hints of the end are a lot more subtle, and we pay less attention to them.

Body Posture:Here, the scene shows Teddy Daniel's slouching. Now, given his title as a high ranking detective, he should be more alert, ready for anything. His inability to be prepared at this point causes the audience to worry about him, and it builds up a character- audience relationship. It also puts forward the question of whether or not he is as qualified as we believe he is, and if he's not, why not? This foreshadows the ending.

The Storm:The storm which is forecast in this scene could be a literal storm, which it does become, but it can also be perceived in a metaphorical way. The 'storm' could refer to the changes Teddy goes trough, and the damage that is left behind. It could also refer to the damage that was caused in the last storm, and that although he has put his walls back up and fixed himself up, he hasn't done it in a way that will protect himself if another storm came his way, which it does.

Uniform:Throughout the film, I believe that uniform is a very important feature. It separates who is who and helps us to define what each character should be like, so that when they are not like that, it's noticeable. When Teddy and Chuck lose their uniform, they become less separated from the people who are there, and that's when the action kicks off. Uniform symbolises the separation of people, and the difference in how they act and treat each other.

Dramatic Angles:The shot is taken from a low angle. This makes the characters seem powerful and important. This is effective because, due to their high ranking jobs, they are powerful. It demonstrates the power they hold at the start of the film, and different camera shots will demonstrate the gradual change in power, and will show Teddy's power levels throughout the film. This is important because it changes our opinion on the character, and those around him.

Long Shot:This has been used to show the island at its most terrifying. It shows just how isolated it is, and how secluded the main two characters will be. This also foreshadows that something bad will happen whilst they're there because it shows the lack of escape routes. If something bad were to happen, the characters would be trapped and isolated in the prison.

Chiaroscuro:This has been used to show the clear contrast between the blue sea and sky, and the island. The sky shows a nice day, reflected on the sea in a fairly pleasant way. This could foreshadow that soon, they won't look so pleasant, when the storm hits. It also defines the island and makes it the main focus of the screen. The characters are headed there, and we know they are.

The Sea:The sea pretty much foreshadows the whole of the ending. Teddy Daniel's turns out to actually be a patient at the mental asylum, because he shot his wife. He did this because she drowned their three children in a lake. This makes the sea very important. Like the island is surrounded by sea trying to invade the island, Teddy is surrounded by memories of his kids trying to fight his new, fake identity.

Multiple Lines of Action:At this point in the plot, it switches between the boat pulling into the island, and Teddy and Chuck on the boat. This is to show the reaction of both Teddy and Chuck, seeing if all is as it should be. To begin with, we may think nothing of it, but as we watch it, we realise the reactions were not as normal as we may have trusted they should be. This is used to emphasise the foreshadowing used in this scene of the film.

The Woman:The woman in this scene is his dead wife. He knows she is dead, but hallucinates her up a lot. This is just one indication to the fact that he is truly crazy. The fact that she is falling apart could indicate the mass trauma he went through, and show that his heart is now just dust like her.

The House:The house is being ripped up and turned to ashes. This could be used to foreshadow the confusion he is going through. That is his world, and it's falling apart in front of him. I think it's being used to demonstrate how being in the mental asylum is tearing his world or what he thinks his world is apart.

Low Key Lighting:The house, and everything in it, is a dull colour. Even the light has a very dull glow, nothing too powerful or bright. This could be indicating how his life is now dull and gloomy, and there's nothing bright in it to lift his spirits any more. He does his job, he survives through life, but that is all.

Facial Expressions:In this scene, Teddy's facial expression is pained and he doesn't care if he gets the ashes of his crumbing wife all over him. He is just determined to hold onto her, and make every moment last longer. The dead wife has a very blank expression on her face, she is dead, and she wants Teddy to accept this.

Low Key Lighting:This sets the scene. Teddy is wandering through Ward C filled with the most dangerous patients in the asylum. The place is very dull mutual colours, the only exception being the green, which adds some colour to it, but also makes it seem very militarized. This suggests the people kept here are very dangerous, and emphasises the idea of needed guns on site.

Over-Exaggerated Sounds:Sounds such as footsteps, dripping, doors creaking and chains rattling are over-exaggerated in this scene. This is to add a tense atmosphere, and demonstrate how Teddy is feeling. The audience then gets a feel for the tension Teddy is feeling, but also his fear. Subconsciously, he fears this place as it is where he usually stays, as he is Andrew Laites. He, however, doesn't know this, because he has created Teddy for him to be, but he still feels very anxious, probably more than would be expected, which is effective, because it makes the audience worry for, and also root for him, hoping he'll reveal what he knows. Unfortunately, they are unaware he doesn't consciously know the answer to their questions.

Red Herring:A man jumps out and says Tag, you're it! to Teddy and Chuck. This is effective because Teddy chases after him, causing the audience to believe he is a very important part of the story. They chase him all over the ward, before he strangles Teddy and Teddy beats him up. This demonstrates Teddy's uncontrollable side, and the fact that he is in Ward C highlights that, however, the man who tagged them is irrelevant to the film, and only buys Teddy some time alone in Ward C to reflect on his days there. One man who is important, however, is the man in the cell he speaks to. He says lots of confusing things, but puts forward the idea that Teddy is Andrew Laites in a very subtle way. We think that the things he says are said because he is a crazy man, annoyed at Teddy for rummaging files on Shutter Island, because now the man will never leave, much like Teddy himself. He then mentions how Teddy had never met his partner before, and we begin to grow suspicious of everyone but Teddy, which in itself is a red herring.

Bright Lighting:This sets the scene. Teddy is in a good mood. He has not began to doubt himself or those around him. He is completely wrapped in his better life. It is not the perfect life his wife is dead and the man who is responsible got away with it, but at least he is a fully functioning man who isn't suffering due to the madness of his wife and the loss of his three children, or so he thinks.

Uniforms:The uniforms of the people witnessing are white. This could be to show their blank, irrelevant personalities, and make them blend into the background. They are unnecessary characters. Teddy's uniform is of very similar colours to the person they are interviewing. This could be to indicate that actually, they are both equals, both from the asylum, and Teddy is not as superior as he thought. This is another foreshadow to the end plot point. This is also reinforced by Chucks dark suit. The colours completely contrast that of the background workers, showing he is important, but also, the fact that he is the only one to be wearing that c