Monday, April 24, 2017

'Sleepless' Is a Reasonably Entertaining Run-of-the-Mill Action Movie

Sleepless is a remake of the critically-acclaimed French crime thriller Sleepless Nights.  It revolves around Las Vegas police detective Vincent Downs (Jamie Foxx) who has to rescue his kidnapped son after he gets himself caught in a high-stakes web of drug mobsters, corrupt cops, and internal affairs.

I haven’t seen its source material, but I can tell that Sleepless is probably not as good as that.  It’s basically a run-of-the-mill action crime drama, with a script packed with clichés and bad writing.  But I was actually reasonably entertained by it.  As a cheesy action movie, it’s somewhat okay.

It’s probably because I went into this movie knowing nothing about it.  Again, I haven’t seen Sleepless Nights, nor had I been aware that it was a remake of a superior movie.  Only knew that fact after Googling this movie for this review.  Hence, its moderately surprising reveals kind of worked on me.
(SPOILERS in this paragraph, if you care.) The main character, Vincent Downs, is somewhat layered.  It starts off looking like he’s a dirty cop – robbing cocaine from mobsters and then getting himself assigned to the case in order to cover it up.  Meanwhile, Internal Affairs detective Jennifer Bryant (played by Michelle Monaghan) is investigating him.  But later, it’s revealed that, unbeknownst to  Bryant, Downs is actually an Internal Affairs detective working undercover to take down the corrupt cops inside the police department.

I’m surprised his real identity is straightaway revealed in the written synopses for this movie (learned this when I Googled the movie).  I think it would have slightly benefited the film if that detail had been kept under wraps during its promotion.  It had a positive effect on my watching experience when I had no idea of this.

In the end, Sleepless is a functional, fairly enjoyable-if-there’s-nothing-else-better-to-watch action film.  Beyond that, it’s an inconsequential 2017 movie.

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