Shelter (2010 film)

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Shelter film.jpg
Theatrical Release Poster
Directed byMåns Mårlind
Björn Stein
Written byMichael Cooney
Produced byEmilio Diez Barroso
Darlene Caamano Loquet
Mike Macari
Neal Edelstein
StarringJulianne Moore
Jonathan Rhys Meyers
Jeffrey DeMunn
Frances Conroy
Nathan Corddry
Brooklynn Proulx
CinematographyLinus Sandgren
Edited bySteve Mirkovich
Music byJohn Frizzell
Shelter Entertainment
NALA Films
Distributed byFSF
E1 Entertainment
The Weinstein Company[1]
Release dates
  • 27 March 2010 (2010-03-27) (Japan)
  • 1 March 2013 (2013-03-01) (United States)
Running time
112 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$22 million[2]
Box office$3.2 million[3]

Shelter is a 2010 American supernatural thriller horror film directed by Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein, written by Michael Cooney, and starring Julianne Moore and Jonathan Rhys Meyers.[4] The film was released as 6 Souls in the United States on March 1, 2013 for video on demand, followed by a limited theatrical release on April 5, 2013.[5]


After Dr. Cara Harding (Julianne Moore), a psychologist, loses her husband as the two walk home from church on Christmas Eve, her father (Jeffrey DeMunn) introduces her to Adam (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), a patient suspected to have multiple personality disorder, to convince her to accept unexplainable psychiatric theories. Adam takes on seemingly impossible physical characteristics of his other personalities.

Cara's father at first tells her about only one of Adam's personalities, David Burnberg. Cara discovers that David, a personality that needs a wheelchair, was a real person who became a paraplegic and was murdered long ago. Cara visits David's mother and tells her about Adam. David's mother, who is highly religious, agrees to meet Adam to help Cara cure him. Adam, as David, reveals to Mrs. Burnberg details private to David. She tells Adam he is evil and leaves in distress.

Adam becomes more aggressive to others, including Cara, and reveals more of his personalities. One of these is Wes, a metal band singer and Satanist suspected of committing suicide. Thinking he created the personalities as escapism, Cara visits his home and finds it filthy, run-down, and full of devil worship objects. She also finds a decomposing body in the bathtub. After calling the police, Cara goes to pick up her daughter Sammy from school. Adam is with Sammy in the personality of a family friend. He questions Sammy about her faith in God, and Sammy says she does not believe anymore, because her dad was murdered. Adam is arrested and questioned about the body in his house.

Cara revisits Mrs. Bernburg, who directs Cara to a witch doctor known as 'Granny' in the witch mountains. After a brief meeting, Granny sends Cara away. Cara sneaks back after hearing screams and sees Granny cutting open an old man, sucking out his soul, and blowing it into a container with a strange symbol on it. Granny then takes out a cancerous lump from his body and sews him up before blowing the soul back into him. The old man wakes up seemingly fine. The witch doctor turns and asks Cara if she still only believes in science. Cara recalls Adam asks about people's faiths when he meets them. She listens to two voice messages on her phone. One is from her brother, who is looking after Sammy. He tells Cara an old man may have answers for her relating to Adam.

Cara visits the man, who tells a story from his childhood while showing Cara a silent home video recorded by his father. Long ago a priest came to his town to teach about God, though he himself did not believe. The priest said witchcraft and pagan rituals were not needed and that people could be healed through faith. Influenza broke out in the town, but its people believed in the priest. When they discovered the priest was a nonbeliever who had inoculated his two daughters and allowed the townspeople to die, they murdered his daughters. Granny sucked out his soul and blew it into the air before stuffing his orifices with mud so his soul could not return. She cursed his body to be a shelter to the faithless.

The police tell Cara that they released 'Adam' to her father and that the body in his bathtub was the real Adam who had owned the home. Cara looks up at the projector screen and sees 'Adam' in the midst of the influenza epidemic. He is the faithless priest from decades ago. Cara calls her dad, realizing 'Adam' is going to kill him. She listens helplessly as the murder takes place, then calls her brother about her discoveries. He tells her Sammy is growing sick just as her family friend and father had been and has a strange symbol burnt onto her back. Cara asks him to take Sammy to Granny. 'Adam' shows up and incapacitates her brother. Cara tells Sammy to put the call on speaker and demands to speak to David. As 'Adam' transforms back into David, he collapses, as David needs a wheelchair. Cara's brother and daughter escape.

After joining them, Cara sees the symbol on Sammy is the same as the one on the witch doctor's container. Granny says she cannot help, as Sammy has already given up on God, but that Sammy will be sheltered with the other faithless souls. 'Adam' knocks out Cara's brother and overpowers Cara. He sucks out Sammy's soul and changes into her personality, revealing he does not have DID, but is the shelter for the spirits of people who abandoned their faith in God. 'Adam' as Sammy lets Cara cradle him. Instead she strangles him before impaling his neck with a root protruding from the ground. As the faithless priest 'Adam' dies, all the souls leave his body. Sammy's lifeless body receives her soul back. As Cara and Sammy comfort each other, Sammy hums a tune written by David, implying David's soul has gone into her body instead.



Much of the film was shot in various locations across the Pittsburgh, PA region. Locations used include: Downtown Pittsburgh and its bridges, the Fort Pitt Tunnel, East Liberty Presbyterian Church, Jones Hall at Community College of Allegheny County, Ritter's Diner near Shadyside, Spin Bartini & Ultra Lounge in Shadyside, various locations in Braddock including the Braddock Carnegie Library and home of Mayor John Fetterman, a residence in the city's Schenley Farms neighborhood, the Collier maintenance yard, and a recreated 17th century Native American village at the Meadowcroft Rockshelter.[6] Peter Martorano, the film's location manager, worked with the Pittsburgh Film Office.


The United Kingdom release was set with a cinema release on April 9, 2010.[7]


The film has been met with mixed reviews. Mike Sheridan from gave the film two stars out of five stating Shelter is "A thriller desperately trying to throw the audience off at every corner, just as writer Michael Cooney's previous screenplay effort Identity did to mostly stellar effect, Shelter is instead a whole lot of stupid wrapped in moody packaging."[8] Mark Harrison from Den of Geek gave a more positive review, calling it "horror by numbers, but it's at least sparing with whatever felt tip pen denotes 'jump scares'".[9] Faith-based Movieguide called the film "extremely well acted" and stated that it "provides a more intelligent tale than the genre usually offers" when comparing it with other horror videos.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Peter Dimako (5 November 2010). "Weinstein Co to release 'Shelter' starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers this year". Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  2. ^ "6 Souls". Retrieved 17 November 2014.
  3. ^ "6 Souls (2013) – Box Office Mojo".
  4. ^ "International Shelter One-Sheets". DreadCentral.
  5. ^ Julianne Moore-Starring Shelter Dusted Off for Release Under Title 6 Souls Shock Till You Drop. 8 February 2013
  6. ^ Vancheri, Barbara (13 May 2008). "Super scary 'Shelter' wrapping up here today". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
  7. ^ "'Shelter' Gets UK Release: Check Out the Poster, Trailer and Stills". BloodyDisgusting.
  8. ^ "Shelter - Cinema, Movie, Film Reviews - Review by Mike Sheridan | Ireland". Archived from the original on 9 April 2010. Retrieved 4 April 2010.
  9. ^ "Shelter review".
  10. ^ "6 Souls". Movieguide. 2013. Retrieved 8 October 2018.

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