Professor ed saxon awakens one morning to find his wife has not returned from work. He spends countless days and nights in a downward spiral of paranoia and sleeplessness. To make matters worse ed is having hallucinations ... more »the house comes alive with an array of horrifying sights and sounds. Studio: Lions Gate Home Ent. Release Date: 08/16/2005 Starring: Jeff Daniels Gil Bellows Run time: 104 minutes Rating: R« less
Sarah F. (Ferdy63) from DALTON, GA Reviewed on 3/20/2009...
A very unique take on a mystery/thriller. The movie opens on Jeff Daniels waking to find his wife isn't home and starting to call friends about her. As the movie progresses, more of the details of his life and his marriage are presented. Don't want to give anything away but the movie is like watching a man's life unravel. It's definitely not a "feel good" movie but it is really unique and interesting.
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A Shockingly Twisted Lynchian Thriller
qixkid | Madison, WI | 10/22/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're expecting a typical thriller upon viewing Chasing Sleep, you're going to be extremely surprised by this powerful work. When I first saw Chasing Sleep during a recent visit to France, I was blown away. Weaving a complex story with sparse dialogue and fantastic cinematography, the film is like a David Lynch work filtered through a less frenetic David Fincher lens.The film, which starts with the simple premise that a man can't fall asleep after his wife fails to return from work one day, combines numerous genre elements with great success. It ranges from realistic drama to surreal science fiction, with some horror, thriller, and action jimmies thrown in.The talent behind this film is amazing. The highly underrated Jeff Daniels plays the central character, Ed Saxon, a discombobulated college professor whose life is falling apart at the same rate as his house. He brings a silent force to his character that leaves the viewer unclear as to his true state of mind and motives. Director Michael Walker forges a world unlike any other captured on film, using cold colors and shadows to paint a depressing portrait of self-imposed exile. The directory of photography allows powerful images to linger on the screen just long enough to be burned into your memory.No other film that I have seen has spawned as much post-viewing conversation as Chasing Sleep. The details of the events that transpire during the course of the story allow an immense amount of personal interpretation, and fuels speculation as to what Bridges' Saxon really was capable of. The fact that this film was never given a theatrical release in the US certainly sours my perspective of American taste in film."
A Gripping, Interior Chiller
R. Schultz | Chicago | 08/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie contains echoes of Edgar Allen Poe's "Telltale Heart," and also perhaps a few suggestions of the cult movie "Eraserhead." In all three works, the protagonist inhabits a house that becomes more and more animate. The plumbing growls and knocks and oozes strange effluents. There are ever-growing spots on the walls and ceiling. There is something on (or under) the floor.
But this is an essentially realistic rather than a surrealistic portrayal of a man trapped - in either his own imaginings or else in some actual, eerie conspiracy of natural phenomena. Jeff Daniels gives a tour de force performance as the man who reports his wife missing, and who then spirals down into a gnawing, insomniac worry that she may have met with foul play.
This movie becomes especially intriguing in light of all the recent publicity given to men suspected of murdering their wives. We think of Lacy Peterson and all the others as we watch Daniels' increasingly bleary and disoriented response to the police, to the outside world in general. Is he just being consumed with fear about what might have happened to his wife? Or is it a guilty conscience that is corroding him? The movie kept me guessing - until very near the end. "
My cup o' tea
Sarah Bellum | Dublin, OH United States | 02/05/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"(3.5/5 stars) This film reminds me of Le Locataire, Roman Polanski's superb thriller about a man slowly succumbing to his neuroses and descending into madness. Most of the story takes place inside one home and the pacing is slow and deliberate, so it might not appeal to all tastes. Fans of Kafka and Polanski, however, are likely to find much of interest here. Jeff Daniels is quite good as Ed Saxon, a professor at a local college. He phones the police early one morning to report his wife missing and with their help he begins to unravel the mystery of her disappearance. The story unfolds from Saxon's point of view, so the viewer really knows as little as he does. Eventually, however, it becomes very apparent to the viewer that Saxon should be cognizant of more than he is. It is always fun to watch psychologically damaged individuals become unhinged in movies because reality becomes contemptuously and surreally distorted, though no one actually gets hurt. Worth watching at lease once."
A big surprise
Pennden | Denver, CO | 11/01/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Showtime really did me in - I didn't realize this was their idea of a halloween movie flick! I didn't mean to watch it, but the movie guide called it a 'suspense' and I kept waiting for tell-tale suspense stuff I guess. When it didn't happen, I found myself standing in front of the TV before I finally realized I could sit and watch. After a bit it was so intense I could barely watch. A perfect halloween night movie."