Ben Kingsley was at the top of his game here as the mysterious Dr. Cawley. He was an easy man to be suspicious of thanks to his squinty eyes and devious smirks. Thanks also to the implications and direction of the movie. While DiCaprio and Kingsley easily filled the bill for leads, all the actors did a great job of keeping this viewer's attention.
And the technical aspects, such as the beautiful, low-key lighting, cinematography, haunting score, visual effects, and a dim set design adds more to the flavor of the dark, disturbing, and intense atmosphere of the film's plot. I could also tell that this was definitely a Scorsese film, even without his name plastered on all the television previews by the sharp quick pans and edit cuts, the attractive static shots of buildings, and the sudden low and high levels of sound effects and music pitches. That is Scorsese's style, and I love it, though the musical score could have been turned down a notch…it does not need to be blaring. We know it's a suspenseful movie, so it’s ok.
I liked the film a lot. My advice would be not to think about the plot too much but go with the flow and enjoy one of the all time great filmmakers showing off his talents in a new genre.
4 / 5