Film explores family bonds

Fringe Flicks series raises money for Nanaimo's TheatreOne

TheatreOne’s Fringe Flicks presents the award-winning Take Shelter, a haunting and powerful film anchored by a standout performance. This powerful film explores one man’s attempt to control the fear that overwhelms him, and to protect his family from forces he cannot understand.

Construction worker Curtis (Academy Award-nominee Michael Shannon) leads a good and decent life in his small Midwestern town. He has a beautiful young wife, Samantha (Jessica Chastain), and a happy daughter who is hearing-impaired. He gets along with his fellow employees and works hard to provide for his family. Curtis has everything a modest man could wish for. So when he starts having nightmares about ominous storm clouds lingering above his town, threatening disaster for his family, he tries to push these thoughts far from his mind.

The visions don’t remain safely contained in his head for long. Feelings of dread per­vade his waking life, and he starts to see signs of catastrophe at every turn. Unsure of whether the dreams are predictions of impending doom or just projections of his own fears – or signs of his eroding mental state – Curtis tries valiantly to take con­trol. Looking into his own family history of schizophrenia while at the same time acting on his hallucinations and constructing a storm shelter in his backyard, he questions his own sanity but nevertheless embarks on a project to protect his family.

Writer/director Jeff Nichols explores Curtis’ anxiety through visual effects and a sinister score by David Wingo. Reunited with Shannon in this follow-up to his 2007 debut feature Shotgun Stories, Nichols brings to life a man con­sumed by dark fantasies that could either be paranoia or portents of a very real fate. For Curtis, there is one possible solution to cop­ing with his unbearable fear: a belief in the strength of humanity and the bond of family.

Take Shelter screens at Avalon Cinema Feb. 5 at 1, 4 and 7 p.m.; and Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. Tickets $12. Please call 250-754-7587 or visit Tickets are also available at the door one hour prior to showtimes.

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