Take Shelter (2011)
Jeff Nichols, USA
There are loads of movies out there about depression, but none of them can match the creative intelligence and originality of Take Shelter. Rather than going for the usual clinical depiction of someone suffering from depression, Jeff Nichols creates this fantastical story where you're forced to actually get into the head of something afflicted with some deep mental health problems. The concept of feeling like the world is caving in on you and the claustrophobia of being locked in your own thoughts is just depicted so perfectly. And considering that the overarching story element here is actually quite out there, it's surprising how Nichols is still able to deliver all this in a relatively subtle way. It's just nice to see a movie where people are going through mental health issues in a relatively 'normal' way. You're forced to feel what the characters are going through internally, rather than latching onto a clearly drawn out external representation of those feelings. I won't go into detail about how much I'm in love with Jessica Chastain as there will be many future posts about that on this website. Michael Shannon is also perfectly cast here and I'm also fairly certain he will go down as one of the finest actors of this generation. Pun fully intended here: if you haven't seen it already, don't hide from this movie.