Take Shelter

2011

Take Shelter

Critics Consensus

Michael Shannon gives a powerhouse performance and the purposefully subtle filmmaking creates a perfect blend of drama, terror, and dread.

92%

TOMATOMETER

Reviews Counted: 161

81%
liked it

Audience Score

User Ratings: 25,614

TOMATOMETER

N/A
All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0

AUDIENCE SCORE

81%
Average Rating: 3.9/5

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Movie Info

Curtis LaForche lives in a small Ohio town with his wife Samantha and six-year-old daughter Hannah, who is deaf. Money is tight, and navigating Hannah's healthcare and special needs education is a constant struggle. Despite that, Curtis and Samantha are very much in love and their family is a happy one. Then Curtis begins having terrifying dreams about an encroaching, apocalyptic storm. He chooses to keep the disturbance to himself, channeling his anxiety into the obsessive building of a storm shelter in their backyard. But the resulting strain on his marriage and tension within the community doesn't compare to Curtis' private fear of what his dreams may truly signify. Faced with the proposition that his disturbing visions signal disaster of one kind or another, Curtis confides in Samantha, testing the power of their bond against the highest possible stakes. -- (C) Sony Classics

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Critic Reviews for Take Shelter

All Critics (161) | Top Critics (43)

  • In my estimate, this unique and frequently arresting film suffers from the monotony of the lead players' affect, and from the film's urge to have its gloomy cake and eat it.

    Jun 20, 2013 | Full Review…
  • A hallucinatory thriller anchored by a deeply resonant sense of unease.

    Jan 4, 2012 | Full Review…

    Justin Chang

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • The film's power should reside in this agonised human dilemma, but in the end it becomes a rather self-important shaggy dog story.

    Nov 25, 2011 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • As in Todd Haynes's 1995 masterpiece, Safe, we are in a world that can't be pinned down.

    Nov 25, 2011 | Rating: 4/5
  • The supernatural horror/suburban drama mash-up doesn't always sit well, but there's no need to take shelter from the Shannon/Nichols partnership.

    Nov 24, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • When future film historians look back at the cultural fallout from America's financial collapse, 'Take Shelter' will be a key text. That is, if the storm doesn't sweep us all away.

    Nov 22, 2011 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Take Shelter

A compelling, gloomy and unsettling allegory that moves in a careful slow pace towards a glorious conclusion and is centered on a modern Noah, paranoid and on the verge of a mental breakdown, played with such an extraordinary intensity by Michael Shannon.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

A guy's nightmares convince him that perhaps his family would be well served by expanding the tornado shelter out in the back yard. Only there's the history of mental instability in his family ... is it his turn to now slide into that dark abyss? His neighbors, his colleagues at work, and eventually even his wife start to wonder as well. Terrifically played by all concerned, but Shannon and Chastain really reel you into the consideration with the level of their involvement. Good filmmaking.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Just like Melancholia and We Need to Talk About Kevin, "Take Shelter" is another movie that is very well-made, yet very uncomfortable to watch. In fact, the film is especially comparable to the former, which also uses the film medium to portray a mental illness through some sort of impending doom. "Take Shelter" has the benefit of Michael Shannon's amazing performance, and Jeff Nichols definitely knows how to make audiences care about the characters. Unfortunately, it has an uncompromisingly oppressive atmosphere, which is the point but still makes it a tough watch for most audiences. Also, the little girl in this movie somehow doesn't cry despite one trauma-inducing scenario after another.

Sam Barnett
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

From Start to finish this movie sucked. Its a wonder it didn't ruin Michael Shannon carrer. 2 hours long are you kidding me, was this someone's tax write off. If you give thiss anything above 2 stars please I say please dont ask me to go to the movie with you. 1/2 star 11-09-13

Bruce Bruce
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

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