2010 was an odd year for the horror genre. Despite the fact that 2010 saw the most major theatrical horror releases of any recent year that I can remember, there wasn't that one "must-see" film that defined the year. If you've listened to the Best of 2010 episode of the podcast or read Schnaar's Top Ten Horror Movies of 2010 column, you know that us writers here at Bloody Good Horror had a hard time coming up with a definitive list as we all had wildly different opinions about how the year shook out.
In my opinion, Martin Scorsese's "Shutter Island" was one of the years top genre films. While not being on par with the rest of Scorsese's filmography (but really, with timeless classics like "Raging Bull", "Taxi Driver", "Goodfellas", "Casino" and "The Departed" being in there, that's sort of to be expected), "Shutter Island" is one of the most atmospheric horror films I've seen in a while. It's an absolute delight to watch a director of Scorsese's caliber try his hand at horror and he creates a beautifully dark, disturbing and grimy picture that feels right at home with the old Universal horror flicks of the '80's.
Despite the fact that there's really nothing new in the plot (and honestly, the twist at the end was telegraphed fairly heavy-handedly), "Shutter Island" succeeds as a case study in how to develop an atmosphere, set a mood and make a film that feels timeless. If you haven't gotten a chance to catch this one yet, take some time this weekend to give this one a spin.