Queen of Sleep Stumbled across Science of Sleep (2005)
Stumbled across this film on one of the sleep forums. Science of sleep can be found on Amazon. I am not listing it because I have not seen it yet. Have you? What d you think? Do leave me some feedback on it. I had never heard about it before today.
Wikipedia says the film is a French-Italian comedy directed by Michel Gondry. Yes, the same Gondry that directed Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind. The original title of the film is La Science des reves. I love the french language, it is so beautiful. I would like to go to France and brush up on my language skills from 12 years ago. Oh well, soon enough, there are so many things I would like to do first.
Science of sleep features Gael Garcia Bernal, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Alain Chabat. Charlotte Gainsbourg is the only actor that I recognises. She has been very successful of late in films such as: Melancholia, The Tree, Persecution, Antichrist and The City of Your Final Destination as well as obviously being the daughter of Jane Birkin and Serge.
As I have not seen it yet I have compiled a concentrated collection of the reviews online for you.
Rotten Tomatoes gives Science of Sleep 23 fresh tomatoes and 11 rotten, 68% percent of the audience (top critics) liked the film and gave it 6.5/10. Minneapolis Star Tribune wrote: Pouring every impulse, inspiration and outlandish image at hand into his project, [Gondry] creates a dream world as visually delightful as it is merrily illogical. And the Houston Chronicle said: In the end, after your time with it, you’ll recall it with a smile, remembering its childish wonderment and mischievous sense of humor. So far so good, it sounds like it would appeal to narcoleptic audience. well, as long as you watch the DVD, anyway because then you can rewind it again and again if you needed too.
Then Katarina Longworth writes this review for the Sundance festival of the film where she claims the director is image based and cannot pull of a traditional narrative strain. Charlie Kaufmann was the writer behind Gondry’s previous successes and Katarina adds that the film would’ve been better if he had written the script. I can’t help thinking that perhaps this was the point exactly that the science of sleep has a visual narrative that is illogical and maddening and there is no room for a coherent narrative. My point of view would in that case turn the film into an art house film. I still, think although, I agree with my previous point, that there needs to be a thread pulling it-holding the story together otherwise it would be pointless (I hear my art friends screaming at me: you don’t understand art!). Memento is a fine example of a film with a similar theme although the film genre is different. Katarina Longworth quote (funny and brilliant!!) Gondry tends to make movies for and about two kinds of people: sad-eyed boys with fantastic record collections, and the art school girls who want to make out with them. This one’s no exception, packed as it is with references to indie bands and Russian animators, and goofy retro electronic toys, and fabulous-looking young people wearing the world’s greatest homemade haircuts. The Science of Sleep is something like a Luis Bunuel film, but with politics replaced by fashion. It is, essentially, a hipster wet dream. I love this film already (ha! ha!)
IMDB give sthe film 3.5/5 stars. BBC Movies writes: ….. he (Gondry) grounds the flights of fancy in enough emotional reality to avoid seeming self-indulgent. But credit should be shared with the leads: frosty at first, Gainsbourg reveals warmth and sensitivity, while Bernal leavens his character’s edge of creepiness with cheeky charm. Together they’re silly, giddy, irrepressibly inventive – a lot like the film itself, in fact. The BBC gives the film 4/5 stars (highest yet!)
The most sympathetic review comes from Slant magazine (4/4 stars). They begin the review by comparing: The difference between Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and The Science of Sleep is the difference between a good pop song and a great punk record, a fluid Escher-like mindbender and a kaleidoscopic Jackson Pollack drip, and finishes by saying: For Gondry, the science of cinema is not unlike the science of sleep, where everything and anything is possible. Gondry, like David Lynch, makes art from the many-spindled arcs of our dreams and fantasies, but Lynch hasn’t gone so far as to suggest that our dreams are works of art themselves, our imagination a gallery of unfinished, haunted frescos. To submit to Science of Sleep becomes something strangely akin to acknowledging that our dreams make more sense than our waking life. Imagine that.
Sounds like the perfect film for Queen of Sleep!