Before I Go To Sleep – film review

Before I Go To Sleep

Celebrity guest contributor, the legendary Hugh Cornwell, reviews the new movie from writer/director Rowan Joffe, which sees a woman (played by Nicole Kidman) wake up every day, remembering nothing as a result of a traumatic accident in her past. One day, new terrifying truths emerge that force her to question everyone around her:

Don’t expect your average Colin Firth in this one, or you’ll be disappointed. Let’s hope he’s got bored with where he was going, and this is a sign of the future. I haven’t read the book on which this film is based, so it was all new to me. Nicole Kidman is back on form after Grace too. Mark Strong is very convincing as the specialist trying to help Nicole out of her predicament of waking up each day with a blank mind. Although in a way I’m quite envious.

Rowan Joffe has done a good job behind the lens, and obviously some of his father Roland’s talent has rubbed off. He’s very fond of the ‘angle on’ shot, which means extreme close-up, and it’s used to good effect here to heighten the tension between the actors.

For once we have a British thriller that works, as most of the time they are unconvincing. This time though, you know you are in London, and it feels authentic, rather than being overdramatised. It’s all implied and you’re never quite sure where it’s going. But for me, Before I Go To Sleep is Firth’s picture. Well worth seeing if you want to be surprised by him. What’s next, Colin?



Words by Hugh Cornwell. Visit Hugh’s own website here. It’s an online radio station dedicated to bringing the best of film, music, interviews and music pieces from his celebrity guests’ favourite films.