Take Shelter was a pretty spectacular film. Very deliberately paced, but it hits all the right emotional notes. The use of silence along with an oh so subtle and otherworldly score brings the mundane a sense of dread. This film is does one of the best jobs at bringing mental illness, and the helplessness of modern society to life. Not all of the periphery characters get the character arcs they observe, but there's no denying how great Shannon is in the lead role as Curtis. He imbues his character with such a soft melancholy, that makes you uneasy in anticipation of his psyche's breaking point.
I also like how the film illustrates how we create our own problems, by obsessing about preventing an imagined problem. It portrays a life of quiet desperation beautifully showing how hard it is for Curtis to open up his wife, despite her clear desire to understand him. When Curtis loses his job, he has a demeanor of resigned acceptance, as though nothing in real life can compare to the fears of his subconscious. In this manner, the film shows how divorced Curtis is from reality. Also, the film is quite suspenseful, with its artfully unshowy camera, because it never succumbs to cheap scares.
It's insane how good and gorgeous Jessica Chastain is. After seeing The Tree of Life and this, I kinda wish she was my mom (that is, if I didn't already have an amazing mother). She has such an expressive physicality making her great as a flawlessly compassionate mom.
Not quite sure what to make of the ending at the moment. Was it supposed to be a justification of Curtis' paranoia, or was it just another nightmare of his? I can't remember exactly what Samantha says, but it's something to the extent of her finally stating her acceptance of Curtis' worries. That might indicate either a subconscious desire for understanding on Curtis' side, or the film's pessimistic take on the random bleakness of the universe a la A Serious Man. Any thoughts on the ending?