Insomnia

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Although I haven't seen the original, so I can't compare, Christopher Nolan's Insomnia is a thoroughly enjoyable movie. Al Pacino plays Dormer, an LA cop assigned to a murder case in Alaska. He and his partner, Hap, have been shipped up north until problems with the IA and the homicide/robbery sect of the LAPD have blown over. They're investigating the murder of a 17-year old girl, whose body was found in a garbage dump, and whose killer (Robin Williams) is less a monster and more a clever, wounded man afraid to live up to his mistakes. Then more mistakes are made and things become more complicated. Oh, and the movie is set during the Alaskan summer, so it's always daylight.

What I like most about the movie is the photography - it creates a palpable sense of the cold, foggy, and wet Alaskan summer, and turns the 24-hour daylight into a kind of living hell for Dormer. I like how the movie is more concerned with the atmosphere than it is with the plot itself - it's nice to see. It's very, very impressive. The performances are good, too. Both Pacino and Williams are remarkably restrained, and instead of play up their stardom, they inhabit the lives of two confused, scared men who are in the same boat. Both are terrific.

Unfortunately, the script jumps in to more conventional thriller territory towards the end. The movie's final scene in particular feels false and tacked on. But these are minor problems that should be forgiven for the movie's obsession with atmosphere.

For the purposes of easy reading, if I had to give this movie a rating, I'd give it 3 out of 4 stars.
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i, too havmnt seen the original. But this was great! All the acting and espically the directing was awesome! Everyone here should see this movie!
I also had a problem with the ending, but its still great!
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crazed out movie freak
haven't seen it but my parents have they said shockingly williams played a descent bad guy. i was amazed.
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I like Al Pacino and all but this movie was a little to slow and the way they filmed it made me want to sleep. I don't think seeing it late on sunday night after a long weekend helped either but none the less, it was only an OK movie.


Insomnia is about a LA detective (Al Pacino) who gets invited with his partner to Alaska to help solve a brutal murder that the local cops can't crack. The victim is a teenage girl who got beaten to death one night after leaving a party. Everyone suspects the boyfriend because they were last seen having a fight just before she left the party. After some luck they end up getting a break in the case and they set a trap for the killer. Of course the trap doesn't work and everyone ends up running around in the fog trying to figure out what is going on. 2 people get shot, one of whom is Al's partner, and worst yet Al is the one who accidently shot him. The only witness to his crime is the killer, who promises him not to tell if he lets him walk.

The whole movie revolves around Al pacino trying to catch the killer and at the same time not get caught for the shooting death of his partner.

The killer is none other than Robin Williams. He plays an author that writes police novels. I have never seen Robin Williams play the bad guy, or anything close to what he played in this movie. I was skeptical at first when I heard he was playing the bad guy, but he does a good job.


Now you are probably wondering why the movie is called insomnia. Well thoughout the whole movie Al Pacino can't sleep, for a number of reasons. First off this is alaska and during this time of year the sun is up 24 hours a day, it doesn't get dark, and he can't sleep with the bright light in his room. I think the real reason can be explained with a quote that Hillary Swank says in the movie. Hillary Swank is the local detective that grew up having Al Pacino as an idol, and is now looking at him for all the advice he can give her. Anyway here is the quote "A bad cop can't sleep because of the quilt he feels, and a good cop can't sleep because he is trying to figure out the missing piece of the puzzle." That might not be the exact quote but you get the idea. So either way Al Pacino doesn't sleep for 6 days and he starts to get all weird, which makes the movie even more interesting, because you never know if he is going to pass out in the middle of the scene.

This movie has an OK ending, nothing to write home about, but I think it wraps up everything nicely. It would have been nice if it were just a little longer. I don't like it when movies leave you hanging, I like it if they wrap somethings up at the end.

Check out this movie if you like action dramas with some suspense, or if you don't want to watch Star Wars Episode II or Spiderman. If you don't care either way, wait till it comes out on video.



I gave it a 7 out of 10, because it was still better then alot of movies I have seen lately.

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I ain't gettin' in no fryer!
Sorry, had to edit our your site link. It's alright to have it in your signature, but not in the post itself.
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Sorry Didn't know, it was my first post. I'll Cut and paste my review into the Post next time.



Lets put a smile on that block
Yo guys! (my birthday today-just pointing that out )

So whoes seen this wonderful film? Saw it last night and LOVED it. Very clever, by "Memento" director so it was definatly gonna be an interesting one.

Robin Williams is a GOD in it. I love him i love him! Al Pacino wasnt too shabby either, and Hilary Swank was FAR form shabby
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Enemies are so stimulating.
i agree that film rocked! anyone know when it comes out on dvd coz its not on play.com to buy yet. sum of all fears is out in december though so im guessing it will be around the same time
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A novel adaptation.
I ruined this move for myself, heres why:

To me, Robin Williams will always be Mork from Ork
and any attempt he makes at a serious role, just seems to be him tryng to change his image, FAR too late into his career
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Enemies are so stimulating.
yeah i always thought that until i saw good will hunting and what dreams may come and now im convinced he can play both comedy and serious.



A novel adaptation.
He can, but sometimes, when in a theater, I'll be watching his scene, and all I'll hear is
"Nanoo nanoo"



Enemies are so stimulating.
lol. i dont get that. but when i was watching insomnia i did catch a glimse of mrs doubtfire lol



The new Insomnia is a good re-make, but I still prefer the original a bit. I'd grade the original an A-, the re-make a B+.

Chris Nolan's Insomnia (2002) debuts on R1 DVD October 15th, 2002. It'll include commentary tracks by Nolan, Swank and others, an on-camera interview of Pacino by Nolan, a making-of documentary, a cimematography featurette, deleted/extended scenes with commentary, trailers, etc.

For anyone interested in checking out the original Insomnia (1997), it is already available on R1 DVD, part of the Criterion Collection. It's a terrific psychological thriller, more subduded, darker and and introspective than the re-make. It was made by Norweigian filmmaker Erik Skjoldbjaerg, starring Stellan Skarsgard. Skarsgard may be familiar to U.S. audiences from movies such as Ronin, Good Will Hunting, Deep Blue Sea or The Glass House.
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Enemies are so stimulating.
you know what...i knew i reckonised that title. i didnt realise it was a remake though. dam. im gonna have to watch the original now.



I never could get the hang of Thursdays.
I watched this film last night, trying to catch up with Christopher Nolan films. I think my views are pretty similar to others in this thread, it looked good, the performances were good, but the ending was silly and too straightforward. Or, as Mr Next said, 'there was too much closure' (he much prefers an ambiguous ending).

I was a bit disappointed to see at the end that it was a remake. I don't understand the mania for remaking films, especially good ones. I feel like I need to see the original now.



I was a bit disappointed to see at the end that it was a remake. I don't understand the mania for remaking films, especially good ones. I feel like I need to see the original now.
If it wasn't a remake, would you have been interested in the original or even heard of it??



I never could get the hang of Thursdays.
If it wasn't a remake, would you have been interested in the original or even heard of it??
If I'd heard of it, I'd have been interested in it, if only because it's got Stellan Skarsgaard in it. But you're right, I probably wouldn't have heard of it without the remake. But I think that's sad, all the same.



The original is, IMO, much better, though I did see it first. My biggest problem with the remake is that I don't feel the sense of weariness that, for me, drenches the first film. Had I only seen the remake, I'm not sure I'd have understood why they called it "Insomnia" because I got no sense of lack of sleep or anything throughout the film. In terms of quality, the remake is a good film, what with the talent both in front and behind the camera, as well as the budget and competence you expect with a Hollywood film. However, in terms of an experience, as art or whatever else you look for/want in a film, I believe the original pisses all over the remake.