These actors should know better than this. This is about a police officer (Jamie Foxx). If he is dirty or just undercover remains a mystery, but he must do whatever it takes to recover his kidnapped son (Octavius J. Johnson) from some unsavory types trying to recoup their narcotics, all while he is being investigated by internal affairs. Apparently this is based off a French movie that I’ve never seen, which means this might have had a chance… but this was one of the very first releases of the year 2017. That is almost always not a good sign, and I’m just going to cut to the chase: while there are some somewhat big name actors in Sleepless, this is on par with movies that should have been swept straight to video without a theatrical release.
Now I actually do like the majority of the actors here, although T.I. looks way too excited to be featured in a Jamie Foxx movie. I have always had a soft spot for Michelle Monaghan, even though her career never launched the way that it should have. Scoot McNairy is an underrated actor with chops, and I thought he was exactly what the premier of the third season of Fargo needed. I loved David Harbour on Stranger Things, and both Gabrielle Union and Jamie Foxx have proven themselves in prior projects. The problem is that they are all only given one thing to do, and none of them are written to have an ounce of personality. I know actors can breathe leave life into a lesser project, but sometimes there is only so much you can do. I am fairly confident everybody involved in this knew that they were just collecting a paycheck with Sleepless.
If only Kiss Kiss Bang Bang was a smash hit instead of a cult favorite.
This really is action movie template number 3, and there is nothing about this that anybody is going to remember a week after watching. In a word, it’s generic, and it is not worthy of your time. It didn’t make me angry, but I do have to deduct additional points for them having the gall to leave the door open for a potential sequel. I think everybody in this was well aware that this was a turkey, and cutting that tacked on ending could have just shaved 3 minutes off the runtime.
Sleepless (2017) *1/2
– Critic for Hire