In writer/director Jeff Nichols’ drama Take Shelter, Curtis LaForche (Michael Shannon) lives in a small Ohio town with his wife Samantha (Jessica Chastain) and six-year-old daughter Hannah (Tova Stewart), who is deaf. Curtis makes a modest living as a crew chief for a sand-mining company. Samantha is a stay-at-home mother and part-time seamstress who supplements their income by selling handmade wares at the flea market each weekend. 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. 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.
Winner of the Critics Week Grand Prize at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.