Marginal thriller-manqué “In My Sleep” has one of those unfortunate titles just right for those with ripe tomatoes at the ready: it’s one of those phrases like “in bed” or “in my pants” that take the piss out of any sentence or title. Sleepwalking is the gimmick in writer-director Allen Wolf’s “In My Sleep,” about Marcus (Philip Winchester), a man with “parasomnia” who awakes one morning in a strange bed daubed in blood and a knife at his side. Conversations ensue. In bed. In my sleep. The attempt to construct a thriller without an overt antagonist is worthy: the beasts that lie within are uneasy ones. Wolf cites painter Giorgio de Chirico as an influence, and a couple of images are memorable, especially Marcus’ buff form in canary-yellow briefs contorted in fetal repose and the distorting character of water. The Bernard Herrmann-esque score amuses. With Philip Winchester, Tim Draxl and the toothy, cheery Lacey Chabert as his neighbor-cum-sounding board. 105m. (Ray Pride)
“In My Sleep” opens Friday at Facets. Wolf will appear after Friday and Saturday’s 7pm and 9pm shows.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published later this year.