Before I Wake (2018)
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Critic Reviews for Before I Wake
Horror movies that exploit broad childhood phobias about bedtime lights-outs and basement chores are a dime a dozen, but it's really refreshing to find one made with a parent's curiosity and concern for a child's point of view.
A flawed film, but there are elements that really work, especially the lead performance and some of Flanagan's gifts with composition.
There's a tangible heartbeat to Before I Wake that you don't often see in modern genre films, and I think that's why I enjoyed it as much as I did each time.
The animating ideas of the project are sound, and Flanagan's handling of the material creates a good mixture of magical realism and slow-developing mystery.
It makes for an intimate portrait of not only the terror felt by children after the night light has been turned off, but in the wonder and dread of the parents who are tasked with keeping those babes safe-and shaping the fancies that dance in their heads.
Audience Reviews for Before I Wake
Good premise, good design. Bad lead performance, bad... amount... of dropped plot points? That was less concise than it sounded in my head. What I'm trying to say is that for every positive Before I Wake has on offer, there is an equal and opposite negative to bring it back down again.
This film deserved a wider showing and it was something I quite enjoyed. It plays a lot like Mama and visually it feels much the same, not a bad film. The only issues I had was the kids performance which was extremely dull and uninspired, why must he always be a zombie? He did sleep at certain points. The story was very interesting and that final scene is brilliant, emotional and very strong. I couldn't get why Bosworth's would attempt to save the kid after he did what he did, this ultimately dropped my score. Flanagan is a great talent behind the camera and I like to see where he goes next, I can't fault his visual storytelling and this atmospheric gem should find an audience through streaming. 28/04/2017.
What could have been a great psychological drama about loss and healing turns out to be a frustrating and tonal mess after a promising beginning. Full review on filmotrope. com
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