After a parade of Scum Bucket-worthy flicks marched through theaters the past few weeks, two of the greatest living directors have arrived to rescue cinema from the February doldrums: Rolling Stone's Peter Travers takes a look at the latest works from Martin Scorsese and Roman Polanski in this week's *At the Movies*.
First, there's Shutter Island, Scorsese's spellbinding thriller that places Leonardo DiCaprio's U.S. marshal in a mental asylum on the hunt for an escaped killer. A hurricane strikes the island asylum, freeing some of its captives, and DiCaprio dances the delicate line between reality and insanity in Scorsese's suspense thriller. Indebted to '50s films like Shock Corridor and Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Shutter Island also has a deeper subtext lurking under the surface.
Polanski's The Ghost Writer is also out in limited release this weekend. The story revolves around Ewan McGregor, the title's ghost writer, who is hired to pen the memoirs of a former British prime minister played by Pierce Brosnan (and intentionally based on Tony Blair).
As McGregor digs into Brosnan's life, a past of murder and intrigue creep up as the ghost writer is thrust into a mystery. Travers adds you'd be crazy to let Polanski's legal troubles prevent you from seeing this film. In fact, after enduring duds like Valentine's Day and the horrible horror film The Wolfman, you owe it to yourself to see both Shutter Island and The Ghost Writer.
Finally, with Oscar season upon us, Travers is here to answer all of your burning Academy questions. This week, Travers reveals who he would pick — both living and dead — to host the Oscars, plus discusses Up's chances of winning the Best Picture award.
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