Young and handsome Marcus Turner (Philip Winchester) goes to sleep at night and wakes up the next morning in odd places, sometimes with blood on his hands, sometimes with mud on his feet, with no memory of what has passed between dark and dawn. Plagued by nightmares, his sleepwalking is getting worse and the pills his doctor prescribed might as well be placebos. But when he wakes up covered in blood, a bloody knife beside his bed, and the police at the door, he sets out desperate to find answers. Has he committed murder? The question is taking its toll on him mentally and emotionally. And he doesn’t know who to trust.
With his looks and athletic ability, Marcus is a competitor and loves to win, which he often does. He has no problem with women. In fact, he is addicted to them and cannot commit to any one, not even for a second date. His life is going nowhere. He works for his best friend, Justin (Tim Draxl), and wife Ann (Kelly Overton), at their spa. To add to his misery, Marcus is getting anonymous phone calls from a woman who claims he was a one-night-stand, who not only loved her and left her, he didn’t even recognize her when he saw her again. And she wants revenge.
Because his father haunts his dreams, Marcus tries to talk to his mother (Beth Grant) about his parasomnia, which has plagued him since childhood. But she is cold and distant. Two women come into his life. His upstairs neighbor, Becky (Lacey Chabert), whom he recruits to help lock him down at night so he cannot leave his apartment; Gwen (Abigail Spencer), a woman who is doing her residency at L.A. County Hospital who meets Marcus at a group meeting and wants to become just friends. Trusting her as a friend, Marcus gives her a sample of the blood he found for testing. He wants to know if it’s his own.
I had never heard of this movie, and the plot is a little old and hackneyed. But in the right hands, old and hackneyed can still be highly entertaining. I mean, scary movies don’t usually have really original plots. It’s what they do with them that counts.
Anyway, I was scanning Netflix and gave it my 10-minute-hook-me-or-you’re-out test. It didn’t take ten minutes. I was hooked and biting my fingernails. It even did a gotcha in one scene and I screamed to high heaven. Oh, I love it when they do a gotcha. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. This one did. I’m tellin’ you – it’s real intense.
I had never heard of the actors, which is sometimes — not always — a dead giveaway that the movie ain’t worth watching. But they were good, and they were believable. Can’t ask much more than that from a actor, especially in a movie you’ve never heard of.
Philip Winchester (Marcus) played Frank Stanton in “Fringe”, which I used to watch. He is also a professing Christian who strives to walk the walk as well as talk the talk. In an interview with The Dove Foundation, Winchester said that he takes every Saturday to meet with Christian friends to “hash things out” and to be accountable as a believer. Wow. That’s great to hear. Especially among the increasingly bizarre lives of Hollywood.
Tim Draxl, is an Australian singer/actor with stage credits who appeared in Swimming Upstream, and A Few Best Men. I never saw those, but he was good in this.
You may recognize Abigail Spencer (Gwen) who played May in Oz the Great and Powerful. She’s gorgeous.
But, apparently, I’m not the only one who liked it. In My Sleep actually won the Audience Award at Fort Lauderdale Film Festival, Best Feature Film at Omaha Film Festival, Best Narrative FIlm at the Las Vegas Film Festival, another Audience Award at the Kansas City Film Festival, and the Gold Kahuna Award at the Honolulu Festival. (Wikipedia).
The film was written, produced, and directed by Allen Wolf, his directorial debut. The Hollywood Reporter says of the film that it “never rests, a credit to the tight, psychologically astute pacing of filmmaker Wolf and editor Peter Devaney Flanagan. In like dark vein, cinematographer Michael Hardwick’s taut compositions and vivid scopings magnify this nocturnal horror story.”
Sounds like a pat on the back to me. Mainly what I’m going to do is watch it again with different members of my family. I want to see how they flip out on the “gotcha” scene. That’s half the fun. When and if you watch it, hit my comment thingy on this blog and let me know if you got gotcha’d. Oooooo. I can’t wait.
P.S. I don’t like the trailer to this movie. It misses the intensity.