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3.8 out of 5 stars100
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 4 August 2010
'Shelter' is a horror mystery-thriller that released theatrically in 2010 to mixed reviews. The box-office returns are not worth mentioning.

The movie tells the story of Adam (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) who has multiple personalities. He then gets examined by a psychiatrist (Julianne Moore) who makes a terrifying discovery and starts to uncover a shocking secret.

The movie starts off well with a psychological angle and makes the opening interesting. The movie thereafter presents a some effective jump-out-of-your-seat moments and numerous twist/turns to make the movie unpredictable. So far so good, but where the movie struggles is towards the end, when the pace slows down. The main twist is quite good, however the climax is weak and does not leave an impression. By the time the climax arrived, I lost interest in the movie. I was also left with a couple of unexplained events.

Julianne Moore is perfect in her role. The show stealer is Jonathan Rhys Meyers who produces a strong performance.

The direction provided by Måns Mårlind is competent in the early stages of the movie where there is an impressive build of tension, promising a lot. Where he fails is at the end where he loses the attention of the viewer and fails to live up to the expectations.

The feature has a good idea and at times provides thrills, making it a watchable fare.

'Shelter' in the end is just average viewing. For fans of mystery thrillers, it's worth a try.
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on 12 May 2016
I honestly don't understand all the negative reviews this film received over the years. I watched it last night and I loved every second of it. To be honest I hate horror movies and I watched this film because I know the main actors performances from other movies (Julianne Moore and Jonathan Rhys Meyers) and they both gave an excellent portrayal of their characters. The plot is excellent : a psychological thriller with a supernatural twist. The main reason why I watched this because I don't like slasher movies where everybody got killed for apparently no reason and thank God this is not the case here. The plot slowly unwinds itself and there are a couple of "jump out of your seat" moments. So do yourself a favour and give this film a chance. You won't regret it! Of course if you like the Saw franchise and that type of films it is not the film for you.
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on 22 August 2010
Yes, this film falls into a category that is, if you like it, you'll love it and if you dislike it, you will hate it. For me, personally, watching the top notch performances by the two main actors fascinates my senses. Julianne Moore is great in her potrayal as a doctor debunking the myths behind the illness of a personality-disorders patients. Then comes Jonathan Rhys Meyers in a role that shows that he is just not another pretty boy. His acting is superb and I do hope he will take more meaty roles because this guy can really go far, acting-wise.
It is a slow burning chiller. If you love anything otherwordly, this is a must watch in the shelter of your home...
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on 28 August 2010
When I read the back of DVD for this film, I thought it was interesting but maybe not going to be one of my top 10 psych films. However, when I started watching it I soon changed my mind. It is well acted and has many twists and turns to it. Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, makes a convincing patient and he is able to change his character with ease, making it more convincing. Julianne Moore's character struggled between her professional opinion and her personal one, however, I was slightly dissappointed with her. The acting did become a bit predictable and did slightly turn into the 'lets scream and run around a forest' scenario. But overall I really loved the film, and have already sent texts out to people I know who are into the same films as I am.
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on 11 November 2014
I have to wonder how many viewers of this movie (very well made even if it was a film essentially made for video rather than for theatre release) have had direct experience with the phenomenon of multiple personality disorder. I have had such experience in my life, most directly for almost a full year, and, to some extent, the film corresponds to my own perception of this weirdness, i.e., THAT IT IS REAL, whether the explanation of it be purely psychological and neurological, occult, spiritual, or a combination of such factors.

For example, the afflicted one's trauma and anguish that occur as one personality gives place to another is part of what I have witnessed numerous times. It is deeply unsettling and frightening, as just about everything to do with this disorder, mental or (as in this film) spiritual, perhaps in both cases supernatural to at least some degree. In the case of a friend (whose case, preserving his anonymity, was thoroughly documented by paranormal researchers and resulted in several theses and dissertations about him, as I eventually was to learn), some of the physical manifestations even went beyond what this film shows. Allied to all of this, as the son of a Portuguese witch, were the extraordinarily vivid powers of E.S.P. and of telekinesis (or psychokinesis) of some of this friend's personalities. Seeing the face change unrecognisably before one's eyes and the body turn, variously, taut or looser upon the bones, the paranormal powers sometimes activate, too, is profoundly shocking to witness, not to mention to hear changes in dialect and in languages that the individual persons speak and/or understand. The changes in personality can be downright frightful.

The film, "Shelter: before He Takes Your Life, He Will Take Your Soul", a.k.a. "6 Souls" (of which the North American DVD edition with catalogue release number 210474-DV is the one viewed) handles these phenomena well, with restraint, and, believe me, in some ways less bizarre than they can take place in real life. To give too much a description of the supernatural nature of the tormented soul that Jonathan Rhys Meyers portrays would be to convey "spoilers" of the kind that many prefer not to encounter in a review. Let's just say that the characters in this supernatural psycho-thriller are in for "quite a ride on the wild side" and leave it at that! I watched "Shelter" ("6 Souls") for the second time the next evening after first having seen the movie, and it was as terrifying and vividly gripping as seeing it initially. The concluding moments, without verbalising anything, are of horrifying irony, like a stake driven into the viewer's own heart.

The movie's setting is urban Pittsburgh and in the Appalachian hills and mountains, where old ways and folk religion have flourished in relative isolation, not far away from Pennsylvania's metropolis. Most folks have heard tales of that region, so the cinematic milieu provides a credible sense of place and of primitive culture on which to peg the story. The result is a real work of art, however modestly this film has been marketed.
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on 24 May 2015
Agree with other reviewers saying it started off great but lost it's way towards the end. At points it seemed like it was going to successfully manage the morph into supernatural thriller but by the end it only very narrowly avoided crossing the line into farcical, laughable cliché. You do get a good hour or so of viewing, the majority of the film is good and the weakness towards the end doesn't totally ruin it. Worth watching once if you like psychological/supernatural thrillers. If you enjoyed 'Dorothy' you will probably enjoy this.
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Shelter features Jonathan Rhys Meyers (Match Point &From Paris With Love) as a mental patient who displays some extremely convincing symptoms of multiple-personality disorder. Despite the generally held consensus that MPD is largely psychotherapist-induced, the patient displays physiological differences between his alters; such as being color-blind in one and paralysed in another. X-rays confirm that this is true paralysis, with a true change in spine and mobility ocurring when his personality 'switches'. As Cara (Julianne Moore - A Single Man) delves deeper into each one of his alters, she discovers that her patient cannot be fabricating each personality as they were all real people with real backgrounds that he knows in too much detail to be synthesizing. Her paranoia peaks when the patient starts to absorb people she knows causing their untimely death. Running scared, Cara resorts to a rumoured witch community living in the mountains that maybe able to protect her daughter who has been marked for 'shelter', do they hold the solution to this phenomenom?

Shelter is a fantastic concept; the premise of more than one person occupying the same body had me intrigued from the off. The two leads are well acted and Meyers deserves accolades for his gamut of emotion throughout his performance, having to play many different character-types. The film falls flat on it's face after about half an hour as you start to question just where this is all going.

There is little explanation as to why people are marked for 'shelter' apart from being 'faithless' and it seemed a little odd to me that in 180 years of living the patient has only taken on 3 personalities then during the movie 'shelters' another 6 or 7 in rapid succession with no real motivation other than to torment his psychoanalyst. The soundwave analysis that Uncle Stephen (Nathan Corddry - Rob Corddry's little brother) does is just laughable. I really thought Hollywood had got over incredulous computer scenes in film but obviously not; he takes an image of a shadow from a still of CCTV and converts that into a soundwave that holds a voice, all the while tapping on his keyboard randomly and sipping a beer, listening to music. It was so cringeworthy it made me wish that whole scene had been left on the editing room floor, the movie would be better off for the experience. For the coup de grâce; the witch village is headed up by a gnarled little old lady, it couldn't have been much more cliché if they tried...

In conclusion, this starts out really well and has two strong actors to fill the roles, it just gets lost along the way and becomes another generic horror movie with paper-thin characters, relying on hackneyed plot mechanisms and mysticism to fill in the gaping story holes. Recommended for a decent supernatural thriller but it doesn't steal the show in any respect!
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on 5 July 2015
I'd never even heard of this movie, but I can definitely recommend it. JRM is AMAZING in it. Ms Moore is not too shabby either. I could watch it more than once put it that way. I loved the opening scene I knew I was onto a winner after that and it doesn't disappoint.
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on 24 March 2011
A very entertaining premise (the "personalities" of multiple personality patient Jonathan Rhys Meyer being the tortured souls of dead people) and effective first 40 minutes.

At this point I really felt like this was going to be a classic psychological thriller.

But then just as the soil starts to pour out of the victims' mouths, the tired horror movie cliches come pouring out of the screen and the movie loses its way - big time.

I wanted to be immersed in the tension of the story but instead found myself chuckling at some of the sillier elements of the plot - watch out for the brother of Julianne Moore's character hilariously converting and analysing a sound file that he manages to download from a grainy CCTV image. Laughable. Also look out for the awful reel-to-reel cine-camera footage which looks like it was knocked together by students, and the leader of the black magic group in the mountains - a wrinkly old witch straight out of Macbeth.

There is also an uncomfortable pro-Christian, anti-science theme running throughout the movie, reminiscent of the equally dire "Knowing". Essentially, if you don't have faith in God in this movie, watch out.

An excellent idea, which wasn't thought through. Julianne Moore is better than this. I guess we all need to pay the bills.
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on 20 May 2015
One of the more bizarre films I own which is similar in some ways to From Dusk til Dawn, great film but there's a shift in the story making it not one thing or the other. Thankfully this has been done very well and the shift in the nature of the story is not one that will be overly obvious if you're paying attention to the movie.
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