While treating a policewoman for smoking, hypnotherapist Michael Strother has a telepathic vision of a young girl floating beneath the surface of a stream. The escaped victim of a ritualistic serial killer, the girl has be... more »come mute, and Michael is called upon by Scotland Yard to unlock the secrets she holds in order to catch a man who believes he has discovered the key to immortality.« less
Jefferson N. from BLAIRSVILLE, GA Reviewed on 6/18/2013...
Close Your Eyes was a pleasant surprise. I expected another cheesy modern-day murder-fest full of quick-cuts and no story. Boy, was I wrong! Close Your Eyes owes more to Dario Argento than the current list of bad directors who have no idea how to pace or tell a story. The film is about a hypno-therapist who gets mixed up in a murder/kidnapping investigation. A little girl has escaped a modern-day Zodiac Killer, but has been rendered almost catatonic by the encounter. The therapist tries to hypnotize the girl and find out facts that could lead the police to the killer. Unfortunately, this only works to a limited degree and puts the killer onto his own trail. Can he find the killer before the killer finds him?
This movie truly feels like a modern-day Dario Argento film...Far more than any film Argento has directed himself in the last two decades. The characters feel like they come right out of a 1970's/80's era Argento film and the story is very reminiscent of The first two Three Mother's films (Suspiria and Inferno) and The Church, with it's use of alchemical Hermetic magic and places of power. And the pacing is right out of early Argento movies. It has a very Deep Red-feel to it. Overall, I enjoyed this movie tremendously and would gladly watch it again. After being disappointed over and over by the Maestro's films in recent days, it's nice to see a new director (Nick Willing) who can bring that feel of wonder back. It even has a soundtrack by Simon Boswell of Goblin fame. If you're a fan of Dario Argento's pre-Phantom of the Opera work, run, don't walk, to see this!
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Robbi C. (silverscreensilent22) from WEBSTER GRVS, MO Reviewed on 4/9/2011...
Creepy murder-mystery with a supernatural component. This well-done BBC production keeps you on the edge of your seat until the very end.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Crystal D. from MERIDIAN, MS Reviewed on 12/8/2008...
Not ALL That...
1 of 6 member(s) found this review helpful.
Entertaining Supernatural Thriller.
mirasreviews | McLean, VA USA | 09/27/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Close Your Eyes" is a supernatural thriller based on Madison Smartt Bell's novel "Doctor Sleep". When police detective D.I. Janet Losey (Shirley Henderson) visits a London hypnotist, Dr. Michael Strother (Goran Visnjic), to try to quit smoking, she discovers Dr. Strother's unusual gift: he sees what his patients see while under hypnosis. The London police are at an impasse in a child murder investigation. An apparent serial killer has abducted children, transfused their blood, and tattooed them with an occult symbol. D.I. Losey is charged with protecting a 10-year old girl named Heather who escaped the killer but has not spoken a word since. Losey convinces a reluctant Strother to assist in her investigation by hypnotizing Heather to find out what she remembers about her captor.
"Close Your Eyes" is an enjoyable supernatural thriller that plays for the "Da Vinci Code" audience as well. The murder investigation involves Rosicrucian alchemy, ancient heresies, and the occult, although these things are not explored in depth. Like most thrillers, the story isn't intended to be credible, except on an emotional level. And "Close Your Eyes" does build real suspense. The ending will undoubtedly be too far-fetched for some people. I found that it disappointed on some counts, but packed a nice punch on others. "Close Your Eyes" owes much of its success to its two lead actors, Goran Visnjic and Shirley Henderson. I like these two in every movie I see them, and they don't disappoint here. Both bring a distinct style to their roles, which is very appropriate and appealing in this film. "Close Your Eyes" has some tendency to rehash elements we have seen before, but it is a entertaining thriller nonetheless, and Goran Visnjic is a charismatic presence.
The DVD: The bonus features are nothing special. There are two featurettes and a theatrical trailer. "Cast & Crew Interviews" (8 minutes) consists of short interviews with actors Goran Visnjic, Shirley Henderson, Miranda Otto, and Paddy Constantine, in which they talk about their characters, and interviews with director Nick Willing and producer Michelle Carmada. "Behind the Scenes" is 9 minutes of unnarrated on-set footage taken during production. The theatrical trailer is long and full of spoilers. I've never seen anything like it. The trailer inexplicably tells the movie's entire story. Why anyone would want to do that in a trailer, for a thriller of all things, I can't imagine. Subtitles are available in Spanish."
A taut and suspenseful thriller
William Shatner | Hollywood, CA USA | 05/12/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Close Your Eyes is a taut and suspenseful thriller, twisting and turning effectively between the supernatural and the engaging mystery that drives the plot. The acting is flawless, with ER veteran Goran Visnjic giving a stunning and surprising portrayal of the dark and complex protagonist; a must-see for genre fans."
Compelling psychological thriller
Roland E. Zwick | Valencia, Ca USA | 08/08/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
Written and directed by Nick Willing, "Close Your Eyes" (aka "Doctor Sleep") is a taut, highly effective British thriller that supplements its crime drama scenario with generous helpings of the supernatural and paranormal.
Michael Strother is a hypnotherapist who has returned to England with his pregnant wife and young daughter after seven years living in the States. Strother is asked by one of his patients, a policewoman named Janet Losey, to bring his professional expertise to bear on one of her most baffling cases, that of a little girl who's managed to escape the clutches of a serial killer but who has been rendered mute by the experience. Strother's involvement leads to complications not only with the highly skeptical police force who are less than thrilled at the prospect of having a hynotherapist working on the case, but with his wife as well who fears that any untoward publicity might reflect badly on her husband's career. Of even more concern is the fact that Strother's involvement might also be making him and his own family a target of the killer.
It would hardly be cricket to reveal much more of the plot here, so I'll just say that "Close Your Eyes" boasts a better-than-average storyline, intriguing characters, an effective back story involving Strother's past in America, and enough genuine suspense to help us ride up and over some of the inconsistencies and absurdities inherent in the material. And if the resolution comes out as a bit flatfooted - well, that doesn't wind up being too much of a handicap since weak endings seem to be just about par for the course when it comes to these types of films anyway.
The prime selling point of "Close Your Eyes" is that it makes us care about the characters, particularly Strother, who elicits our interest and sympathy from the start. Goran Visnjic and Shirley Henderson make an engaging crime-fighting team with just the right amount of unrequited sexual chemistry bubbling under the surface to add to the tension.
As a director, Willing frequently interrupts the narrative with free-floating flashes of dreams, memories and hypnotic suggestions, reflective of what is occurring in the minds of the characters. The effect is sometimes confusing but almost always effective in ratcheting up the level of mystery and feeling of dislocation necessary for the story. The film is a bit gruesome and gory at times, but the prime focus almost always remains on the character's interactions and the unraveling of the plot. This is a solid, well-crafted thriller."
Scared To Be Hypnotised - You Will Be!
youngrhi | Auckland, New Zealand | 07/02/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This psychological horror starring Goran Visnjic and made by BBC Films is basically in the same vein as Stir Of Echoes, but has a completely different story. It concerns a murder case involving an (or maybe a group of) occultists who are kidnapping children for evil purposes.
Goran's character is a hypnotist who is ropped into helping a female police detective question a young, now mute, girl(who was the last captive child but escaped)to find clues to the case;He's also suffering from insomnia (altering his sense of reality) and was involved in the drowning of his former patient back in the States.
To provide a change for themselves, the hypnotist, his pregnant wife and young daughter have moved to London and aren't finding life any more pleasant than back home.
It's a very hypnotic scary little film which i definately recommend."
Highly satisfying supernatural shocker.
W. N. Stape | Bayonne, NJ USA | 10/10/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"'Close Your Eyes' is a stylish, suspenseful thriller which will keep you on the edge of your seat until the final riveting scene. What may be most effective about the film is the gradual build-up of suspense, transforming a standard serial murder mystery and smoothly propelling it into a highly original supernatural shocker.
Goran Visnjic is Dr. Michael Strother, a hypnotist specializing in helping smokers kick the habit. When detective Janet Losey, played by Shirely Henderson visits for a session, she discovers the doctor's gifts go well beyond putting people in a trance. As the mystery deepens, Losey enlists Dr. Strother in her investigation of a serial killer plaguing London. Strother resists at first, then realizes he might be the only one to solve a crime which may free him of trauma which has tortured him for years.
Some nice extras are included on the disc, including interviews with cast and crew and a behind the scenes look at the making of the movie. Horror and mystery fans alike have much to savor in this handsomely produced spooky outing."