Insomnia - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Insomnia Reviews

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½ May 31, 2017
Al Pacino is a legend
May 25, 2017
Nolan's trademark touch of moral ambiguity and philosophical poignancy make for a worthy memento follow-up.
½ May 6, 2017
Awesome work . awesome project. 100/100 as per my perspective. This will resonate you at many ways where it resembles the surroundings.
½ April 6, 2017
It's not Nolan's best work, but that still makes it a legendary film.
½ March 25, 2017
Excellent. An excellent remake done right.
March 4, 2017
By far, my favorite Nolan film. This movie is very captivating to me on every level. Based on a previous movie in 1997 titled the same, it is one of the smartest detective movie I have ever seen. Also, the cinematography and music is absolutely stunning, plus the acting is exceptional.
February 18, 2017
Manages to be unique and interesting and hold my attention without being cliche. Thanks for no love story. Love the eerie beauty of Alaska being showcased.
½ February 16, 2017
Decent film, not Nolan's best but it's a really good story with a unique setting and solid performances.
January 24, 2017
Christopher Nolan is usually a fair bet for me, because I feel like he's only had one true failure when directing. This one was another success for me. The story is set up quickly, and things get rolling in no time. I loved the turn that the plot takes that keeps the movie from being a straight murder mystery or police procedural. It kept me guessing how far Pacino's character would go, and how far William's would push him.

It took a bit for me to get over Pacino's attempt at an accent which kept sliding in and out, but I found his character fascinating. His interactions with Hilary Swank were particularly strong, and I loved that final scene between them. Insomnia asks some interesting moral questions, and has you questioning if the ends justify the means. It also has a unique protagonist who rides the line between being sympathetic and being despicable.

Insomnia isn't on par with Nolan's best work, but it is better than many movies in the same genre. I struggled a little with some of the conveniences of the plot. There were moments where I kept asking myself, "would that even happen?" Also there are moments where the local investigators seemed slow on the uptake despite how strange Pacino is behaving. This is the kind of movie I'll be anxious to watch again because I think there are some layers to the film (including some interesting flashes of moments that aren't revealed until the end that would have new meaning the second time through.)
½ January 17, 2017
Grade A crime thriller thanks to a superb cast and direction by Christopher Nolan. The actors are uniformly excellent, with Pacino using his haggard appearance to great effect, playing a man physically & mentally haunted by his actions. What's nice is that he never dulls the edges of Det. Dormer, who is essentially a good man & detective but is willing to cross the line if necessary. He gets great support from the rest of the cast, particularly the late, great Robin Williams as the prime suspect, who nicely underplays his role, playing him almost meekly until his provoked. Behind the camera, Nolan nicely adapts the original film for America, taking the brilliant theme of a detective unable to sleep while investigating a case (the Alaska setting is used to great effect) while taking the plot into exciting new directions. In many ways, this is film prime example of how to do a proper remake, especially of a foreign film. Overall, not exactly a breakthrough, but just a richly crafted one, from the acting to the filmmaking.
December 31, 2016
My favorite Nolan film. It's tense atmosphere and clever display of insomnia help it to rise above similar but poorly executed thrillers.
½ December 14, 2016
well directed and acted. some nicely shot scenes. but very slow and really didn't do too much for me. this is without a doubt nolan's worse film. it wasn't bad though, i just wasn't a fan (2 viewings)
December 9, 2016
A great cast under the direction of Christopher Nolan, highlighted by chilling performances from both Pacino and Williams, makes this an intense thriller.

Grade: A
½ November 25, 2016
A story with not much to it, despite solid performances.
½ September 25, 2016
Damn, this movie is so riveting and smart! Although it is a remake of a Norwegian film, if you look at what the story is about, it just makes perfect sense why Nolan decided to make it. This is a grade-A psychological drama about morality and guilt; but also a masterfully crafted piece of entertainment with great performances and moments of genuine suspense. It is beautifully shot (kudos to Wally Pfister), beautifully edited (kudos to Dody Dorn), beautifully scored (major props to David Julyan, who also wrote the score for Nolan's "The Prestige"), and Pacino and Williams are dynamite. "Insomnia" is one of Nolan's best films. Highly entertaining and engrossing.
September 24, 2016
I've never experienced Insomnia but I have pull some all nighters in my day and they are not fun. Sometimes you have to like school to get a paper done that you started to late but other times its extremly unnecessary but some people just either cant sleep or just like to stay up late. I can relate to being so mentally frustrating at being soooo sleep deprived at a crucial moment such as taking a test or just perfoming in sports. In this case for the movie Insominia, Al Pacino's will dormer lacks the energy when he needs it to catch a crafty killer. Insominia is a brilliant piece of work from the genius himself Christopher Nolan and you see how he is just beginning to use the same tools that made batman saga such as wonderful and masterful trilogy. Insominia definitely has landed on my favorites from this fantastic director.
Insominia takes place in Alaska of all places where LAPD detective Will Dormer is sent to solve a murder of a young girl. He meets the Alaska police department which also has a young female cop by the name of Ellie Burr. Dormer despite having been in all kinds of unique and dangerous situations he finds Alaska to be unlike anywhere he's ever been and as the case progresses he comes face to face with demons and a killer that's he never thought he would come across. All of this happens while he suffers from several sleepless nights thus having insominia.
The story is nicely woven and so thoughtout and complex. its so crazy how the the constant light in Alaska makes it hard to tell when in the day people are out asleep or even just awake so I don't blame will for having insominia. Techically you can say this is what started the filmmaking style that we see from Nolan today. As usual amazing cinematography from wally phister. Such great and beautiful shots of Alaska, a place that you can reeeeally learn about by just watching this film.
Al Pacino performance in this film is amazing. His character has sooooo many layers of complexity and dimensions. He really captured physically the look of a guy who hadn't slept in days maybe weeks. Robin Williams was pretty damn good as a villain. There was still some of the likeableness in Williams but overall he played a well crafted villain who was pretty cunning. He's actually the kind of bad guy who might actually feel sorry for will and in a sick way want to help him. Hilary Swank did a fine job here. I was happy she didn't turn out to be some bimbo idiot she actually had a sufficient sub story in here as well that connected to it all.
Christopher Nolan is amazing here with his directing. He really brings you deep into the characters tired and slightly disheveled self. he really explores the idea of insomnia and how much it can bring you down physically mentally and psychologically .you feel really connected with Dormer and the overall story. He brings such an usual atmosphere and makes it so worth watching.
September 14, 2016
One of the great performances of Pacinos later career. it's almost like the director ACTUALLY deprived him of sleep. A great subtle psychological thriller all around.
½ September 11, 2016
I have seen some brilliant psychological thrillers. This was not one. This movie starts with Pacino's character looking drowsy on the flight to Alaska. This drowsiness plaques the entire film, not from Detective Dormer's insomnia, but from the film's lack of climax & it's inability to construct a coherent story & developer it's characters. It also left too many questions unanswered, like why did these detectives need to help this department with this murder investigation when they are chasing the killer down in the first five minutes of the movie? And if this is a murder mystery, why weren't the cops in the story investigating the murder? What happened in LA that these cops were running from? Was it serious enough that Dormer would murder his partner? And shenanigans with the guns & the bullets? How was the audience supposed to follow that? This was a creepy, incredibly badly written & directed film. Having Pacino play a sleepy cop did not help the story nor did it matter. One of the worst movies I've seen.
½ August 29, 2016
Christopher Nolan throws out his take on the detective/mystery genre and it pays off with top notch performances, great characters and a new twist to this already tired genre.
August 20, 2016
this might be my favorite Chris Nolan film, it's certainly his most straighted narrowed and easiest to access.
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