Thursday, September 27, 2012

Review: 'Sleepwalk With Me'


Sleepwalk With Me has been getting, relatively, a decent amount of publicity.  It's based on of a book based on of a play by fairly well known comedian Mike Birbiglia.  It was produced by Ira Glass of This American Life fame.  It even got a shout out by Joss Whedon of Buffy/Angel/Firefly/Avengers/other fame.  You've perhaps heard of him.

Despite the powers behind it, Sleepwalk With Me doesn't purport to be more than the indie film it is.  It can be seen as a sort of slice of life film, involving no effects or elaborate set pieces.  Like other movies and television shows, it bases itself on Birbiglia's life, experiences, and observations.  It's not particularly special in that sense, but that's part of it's point, and it's charm.  The path may seem well-worn but Birbiglia is so funny and relatable that you don't mind talking that (sleep)walk again.  The acting is remarkable as well; aside from Birbiglia, Lauren Ambrose is his charming better half; Carol Kane and James Rebhorn are hilarious as his parents; Kristen Schaal and Wyatt Cenac are wonderful in their disappointingly short appearances.  This is all based on Birbiglia's life, and you get a good sense of his world with the people he's recreated for the screen.

If you're a fan of Birbiglia, you'll know the basic beats of Sleepwalk With Me, and some of the jokes might fall flat because you've heard them before.  Still, with fantastic characters and charm, and a story that's alternately laugh out loud funny and heartbreakingly sad, and you've got a film that will keep you engaged throughout.

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