Title: Sleepwalk With Me
Directed by: Mike Birbiglia, Seth Barrish
Starring: Mike Birbiglia, Lauren Ambrose, Carol Kane, Marc Maron, Kristen Schaal, David Wain and James Rebhorn
Running time: 90 minutes, Rated PG-13, Available on DVD
Special Features: Q&A with Ira Glass & Mike Birbiglia moderated by Joss Whedon at the Writers Guild. Foundation, Making Of, Outtakes, Behind the Scenes Shorts, Trailer, Commentary with Mike Birbiglia & Ira Glass
Stand-up comedian Mike Birbiglia wrote, co-directed and stars as Matt, (a character based on Birbiglia) a man going through pressures of a budding stand-up career, his girlfriend of 8 years wanting to get married and his dangerous battle with sleepwalking that he chooses to ignore.
If you’re familiar with Mike Birbiglia’s stand up, then you already know this film. Basically the theatre of my mind was better when listening to his Sleepwalk With Me CD than watching this film, which was rather drawn out and dry in comparison. If you’re hearing his material for the first time, you will enjoy the story more. This is foremost a comedy, but it takes some dark turns when Matt continues to ignore his sleepwalking which gets worse, and nearly dies during an intense episode.
We’re all supposed to be on Matt’s side, but he’s a selfish guy. He should’ve broken up with Abby a long time ago rather than stringing her along for 8 years and never stopping to ask her what she wanted out of the relationship. This film also shows that women like Abby are also at fault for staying in a go-nowhere relationship who get all butthurt when the guy they’re with doesn’t want to get married, but stay in the off-chance he comes around. This film will speak to many people in similar situations.
The cast is good. I didn’t picture Carol Kane as his mom, but she is great no matter what she does. Lauren Ambrose was under-used in my opinion, but she is adorable.
The special features are great, and I’m happy they had so many to include on this Blu-ray. If they just had the commentary I would be satisfied, but the extras really make this disc worth the look, even if you know his routine by heart already. I have heard of several people breaking up with their significant others after watching this film, because it’s a wake-up call to their own go-nowhere relationship; so viewer beware.
Total Rating: B
Reviewed by: JM Willis