Sleepless – Film Review by Louise O’Meara
Directed by: Baran bo Odar
Written by: Andrea Berloff
Starring: Jamie Foxx, Michelle Monaghan,Dermot Mulroney, Gabrielle Union, Scoot McNairy, TI.
Sleepless, a remake of the 2011 French crime thriller, La Nuit Blanche, is a slave to its genre film. This crime drama is jam packed with action sequences yet it fails to excite, plodding along from start to finish. The overriding feeling is that you’re watching a prescriptive, action thriller, nothing new but executed fairly decently.
The cast, lead by the usually triumphant Jamie Foxx, are under used in this predictable film. Foxx plays the protagonist Vincent Downs, a Las Vegas homicide detective. His portrayal is often mumbled and although his charisma helps him through it is difficult to invest or care that much about Downs’ plight. The film opens with Downs and his partner Sean (T.I.) stealing 25 kilograms of cocaine that belongs to druglord Rubino (Mulroney) who in turn owes this merchandise to the even more horrific criminal Novak (McNairy). Downs and Sean flee and the pursuit begins. The action takes place from dusk until dawn and mostly in Rubino’s Las Vegas casino. Over the course of the night, several, often comical, obstacles are thrown in Downs’ path. His son is abducted and he is being pursued by the feisty good cop Jennifer Bryant (Monaghan), who for her own personal circumstances is determined to prove herself a worthy investigator and catch Downs.
But do we care? The characterisation has potential but none of the characters have full progressions. They do not seem to be in any way moved or internally affected by the action and so it is difficult to invest in them. So when moments of insight are revealed to us, like Novak’s relationship with his dad, they seem almost comical and unrealistic.
This film has moments of fun but is never hilarious; it has many scenes of action that peter off back into the story before any extreme excitement is reached. That is not to say there isn’t violence, there is, but it somehow seems disjointed. A solid grand.