Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Science of Sleep

The Science of Sleep is directed by the visionary Micheal Gondry - also known for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Be Kind Rewind - and let me begin by telling you that this is as unique and trippy as you would expect. The movie centers on Stephane, a guy in his 20's that moves from Mexico to France at his mother's request. Bored to death with his promotional calendar job, Stephane finds inspiration and confusion with his equally artsy and quirky neighbor Stephanie (yes, their names are very close to each other). Stephane (the dude) escapes to his dreams and finds difficulty breaking down the barrier between his imagination and reality leading to odd relationships with his new friends and coworkers.

Original Release: 2006 (France)
Running Time: 105 minutes

It's rating time!
(Need a rating system reminder?)
Acting - $1
I wouldn't have told anyone to prepare their Oscar speeches but for a (I'm assuming) low budget foreign film I was pleased. International films tend sit as well with me as international cuisine but I enjoyed not knowing anyone that was in The Science of Sleep and really feeling like the characters are people I could know or work with. The constant swapping between languages (English, French and Spanish) made it a little hard to follow and must have been extremely confusing for the actors too, so big ups to them for making it seem so effortless. And one can't forget the script itself and the assuredly difficult task of bringing what must have been a completely drug-induced concept to the screen.

Effects & Animation - $1
I am probably being a little generous here considering where I would normally set the bar for special effects, but the use of elementary school arts and crafts supplies was obviously intentional and I actually enjoyed the simplicity of it. Dream sequences and random occurrences in "reality" kept my eyes open looking for the next use. The methods used here also fit well with the two main characters' passion for creativity and wierd artsy stuff. Nothing was ground breaking, but it was definitely enjoyable.

Repeat Play - $0
I've had this movie for over a year now and finally got around to watching it. I had tried several times before but (ironically) could stay awake past the first ten minutes. Now that I've seen it, the DVD will go back up to the shelf and probably sit there for well over another year before I try to sit through it again.

Hello Ladies - $1
OK... I dig me some European chicks. But I was not really impressed with anything here. Stephanie's friend was kinda cute but barely present in the movie. I'm giving it $1 on a technicality... there actually WAS side boob.

Romantics - $0
While the acting was pretty good, I couldn't for the life of me get into the connection between Stephane and Stephanie. I could barely keep up with who liked who at any given time and was even more baffled by trying to figure out whether what I just saw was actually happening or if it was in his dreams.
Total Rating: $3

I know a lot of people like this movie and I didn't DISlike it but I was far from wowed. I got a kick out of Stephane's calendar idea (if you want to know you have to watch it) though and I learned two very important things from watching The Science of Sleep:
  1. I can't watch a movie with subtitles on the tiny TV in my room, and if I wanted to read I would pick up a book, not a DVD
  2. There are cheaper alternatives to illegal drugs... I can't afford the nose candy, but this movie was close enough)
As always, I hope you enjoyed reading and feel free to leave me some feedback!

1 comment:

Courtney said...

the science of sleep is awesome. you suck at this.