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Shutter

  • PG
  • 2008-03-21
  • 01:25:00
5/ 10
32503 votes
Categories:

Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Newlywed New York City couple Ben Shaw (Joshua Jackson) and Jane (Rachael Taylor) relocate to Tokyo, Japan, where Ben has a job as a photographer. While travelling by car in the wilderness of the countryside, Jane accidentally hits a girl, Megumi (Megumi Okina), standing in the middle of the road and ends up running over her. They find no trace of her body and decide to leave, thinking the victim was uninjured and had left. They later start to find mysterious lights in their photos, which are identified as spirit photography by Ben's assistant, Seiko Nakamura. Jane begins to have eerie dreams and visions that seem like they are trying to tell her something, and senses a presence stalking them.

Ben begins experiencing severe shoulder pain, and his friends begin to comment on how he looks bent and hunched over, but the doctor finds no source of injury. Seiko takes Jane to her ex-boyfriend, Ritsuo (James Kyson Lee), whose career is to investigate and publish paranormal activities, and he tells them that the lights in the photos are spirits as well as manifestations of intense emotions that are trying to be communicated. At a subway station, Jane spots the ghostly presence of the girl she hit and ran over, causing her to believe that she killed the girl. Later, Ben has a similarly-terrifying encounter. They go to a medium, Murase, to find out more about the spiritual activity that has been happening to them. Murase takes the photos, but Ben refuses to translate what Murase says and storms out, claiming that he is a fraud.

Two of Ben's friends, Adam and Bruno, are killed by Megumi. After witnessing Bruno's death, Ben wants to leave, but Jane hands Ben their wedding photo, which shows a distorted picture of Megumi. They realize she has been with them the entire time and go to Megumi's home, only to find her decayed body. She had committed suicide with potassium cyanide long before the car impact and thus they had actually first encountered her as a ghost at that time.

That night, Ben is tortured by Megumi. Jane screams at Megumi to leave them alone; Megumi stops with a brief sinister laugh, leaving Ben alive. After Megumi's funeral, Ben and Jane return to New York, thinking it is all over. However, Jane finds some recent photos in an envelope which show Megumi. With Megumi's clues, Jane finds a camera in a trunk and uploads the memory card into the laptop. There, Jane sees photos taken by Ben, showing Adam and Bruno raping Megumi at her home before her suicide, while Ben does nothing but watch them commit the crime.

Ben returns home, where he tries to explain to a distraught Jane that he felt it was the only way to drive Megumi away. They had planned on using the pictures as blackmail against Megumi if she did not leave him alone, but it turned into rape. He absolves himself of blame because he never touched her. This explains why Megumi murdered Adam and Bruno, and why she has been haunting Ben. Believing that Megumi was trying to warn her, and disgusted by Ben's past actions, Jane concludes that she cannot spend her life with someone like Ben, so she leaves him. Ben tries to stop her, but Megumi locks the door and does not let him.

Driven mad by Megumi, Ben throws the camera across the room. It takes a picture of him, showing Megumi sitting astride his shoulders. Remembering his shoulder pains and the hospital where a nurse weighed Ben and it showed the weight of two people, Ben realizes that Megumi has been with him all along since her suicide without his knowledge. Horrified, and in a desperate attempt to rid himself of her, he electrocutes himself. He is rendered catatonic and sent to a mental institution, where he is shown sitting slumped over on the edge of his bed. The last scene shows Megumi still draped over his back.