September 18th 2017
Jamie, you're better than this.
DVD Movie Review: Sleepless
Date Viewed: May 20 2017
Directed By Baran bo Odar (The Silence and Who Am I - No System Is Safe)
Screenplay By Andrea Berloff, Based on the 2011 French film "Sleepless Night" from Frédéric Jardin, Nicolas Saada and Olivier Douyère
Starring: Jamie Foxx, Michelle Monaghan, Scoot McNairy, Tip "T.I." Harris, Dermot Mulroney, David Harbour, Octavius J. Johnson and Gabrielle Union.
For a movie that's literally titled "Sleepless", it's certainly a real snooze-fest. It's another crime-thriller that has zero thrills and about eighty-six cliches. In his first movie role in over two years, Jamie Foxx plays a corrupt Las Vegas police officer who unbeknownst to his colleagues is actually working undercover for Internal Affairs to dismantle the crime ring that's currently besieging his department. In addition to his undercover duties, Foxx's character is divorced and big shock, he's also not that hot of a father to his teenage son who gets kidnapped by mob enforcers.
Directed by Baran bo Odar (The Silence and Who Am I - No System Is Safe) and written by Andrea Berloff who previously penned "Blood Father", "World Trade Center" and "Straight Outta Compton", "Sleepless" is a would-be thriller that inhabits more yawns than twists and Foxx can do a lot better than this. Set in Las Vegas, Foxx plays Vincent Downs (I'm not kidding folks, his last name is literally named Downs), an undercover officer who's having a very "down" day, he and his corrupt cop partner, Sean Cass (Tip "T.I." Harris) get involved in a cocaine heist that goes wrong and he clashes with Internal Affairs investigator Jennifer Bryant (Michelle Monaghan) who is sniffing on his trail.
Making matters worse, Downs' ex-wife Dena Smith (Gabrielle Union) demands him to drive his son, Thomas (Octavius J. Johnson) to soccer practice but he can't make the time because undercover work is more important to him than family. Eventually, Downs does find the time to drive Thomas to soccer practice but they get ambushed by a group of homicidal gangsters. Downs gets stabbed in the abdomen while his son gets kidnapped by the mob enforcers who are led by casino owner and entrepreneur Stanley Rubino (Dermot Mulroney).
Rubino demands Downs to go to his casino and bring the cocaine he stole from the shipment back to him in exchange for Thomas but delivering the package won't be that simple. With Jennifer Bryant still on his trail, Downs hides the cocaine in a women's locker room and he replaces those bags of cocaine with bags of white sugar because yeah, white sugar looks exactly like cocaine and the bad guys would just easily fall for that.
We also find out that Rubino is associated with a major crime figure named Rob Novak (Scoot McNairy), he's the son of a powerful mobster and he wants the deal to go smoothly without any precautions. It takes him a while but after he finds out that the cocaine is actually sugar, he demands Rubino to find Downs and his son. They do manage to recapture Thomas but Downs is still on the lam. There's not much else going on here except for people either yelling or threatening each other and we get multiple skyline shots for no apparent reason.
All of the actors involved (Foxx, Monaghan, Mulroney, Union and McNairy) have dealt with more exceptional film roles in the past so why should "Sleepless" count as a passable B-thriller? The performers can easily play these underwritten roles in their sleep. GET IT! And for the most part this movie is lazy, derivative and meaningless.
It's based on a French thriller from 2011 called "Sleepless Night" and boy America should stop ripping off the French because it is getting increasingly rancid. This grim and lifeless thriller will not only partake in stealing 95 minutes of your life, you probably won't even remember it by year's end.
A boring and cliched cop film that wastes Jamie Foxx and just isn't fun at all. Plus it feels way to similar to Die Hard.