Entertainment Weekly - p.74
"[T]here's a fine use of Americana, particularly a fragrant ballad from Johnnie Ray and a stinging number from Lonnie Johnson that will crumble your heart." -- Grade: A
Mojo (Publisher) - p.985 stars out of 5
-- "An exhilarating, terrifying and beautiful trip that draws perfect tonal and thematic connections between the 20th century 'minimalists', avant-gardists, and the modern post-classical crew..."
Director Martin Scorsese's films have never used music as mere background noise. His attention to detail, especially when delving into a period piece, does not distinguish between the audible and the visual, a characteristic applied with great care on the two-disc soundtrack to 2010's Shutter Island. Produced by longtime collaborator Robbie Robertson, the tale of two U.S. Marshals sent to a remote Massachusetts island to investigate a murder is lent enormous weight by a score cobbled from the dismal atmospherics (the majority of the film takes place in a hospital for the criminally insane) of modern classical heavyweights like John Cage, Ingram Marshall, Max Richter, John Adams, and Brian Eno. Peppered between the long slabs of ominous avant-garde minimalist chamber music are fleeting rays of light from period radio crooners Kay Starr, Lonnie Johnson, and Johnnie Ray, resulting in a harrowing listening experience in its own right, and one that further cements the filmmaker's reputation as one of American cinema's most original voices. ~ James Christopher Monger