‘Whatever you do don’t close your eyes’
Slumber is a 2017 British-American horror film directed by Jonathan Hopkins from a screenplay co-written with Richard Hobley. The movie stars Maggie Q, Will Kemp, Sophia Wiseman, Kristen Bush and Sam Troughton.
A doctor that specialises in sleep disorders (Maggie Q) is haunted by the mysterious nocturnal death of her younger brother. While performing a routine examination on a traumatized family with sleeping problems, Alice is attacked by the father in his sleep.
The latter is arrested and blamed for causing the family’s sleep issues, but when he is thrown into jail, and the problems get progressively worse, Alice is forced to abandon scientific rationale and accept that the family is being terrorized by a parasitic demon who feeds on the weak whilst they sleep: the Night Hag.
In order to defeat the dark spirit, Alice must journey into her own nightmares and confront her childhood demons…
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“It comes as a relatively cool new twist on the growing subset of sleep-based horror/thrillers that, refreshingly, we’ve not seen in the past. And it’s precisely this aspect that notches the flick a slight cut above the rest. Even when Alice begins to flashback to her own petrifying past, the link between her childhood trauma and her new family of patients feels credibly explicated by the end…” Arrow in the Head
” …Slumber circles around interesting themes of Alice’s guilt and redemption, but can’t quite maintain focus on these more compelling elements (which are ultimately undercut by a needless twist ending). For horror hounds, Slumber may scratch a familiar itch but it ultimately fails to distinguish itself and, like most dreams, quickly fades from memory.” Battleship Pretension
“The silliest character comes in halfway through when the movie switches into full-on Poltergeist rip-off mode. Think Zelda Rubenstein meets Hunter S. Thompson. Slumber is mostly a waste of effort, but it isn’t without some charm. The acting was solid, even amongst most of the children.” The Scariest Things
“This film really has something in conception, but amateurish performances and an inability to top its opening scene stop this one from being effective overall. It’s a shame because there’s a lot of potential in the concept and creepy imagery/atmosphere. If you don’t buy the actors, you won’t buy the characters, and if you don’t buy the characters, how will you buy into their situation?” Shameless Self Expression
“The fun of watching this inept supernatural thriller comes from wondering just how much worse it can get. The answer is, unfortunately, “a lot”, as it moves effortlessly from clumsy, to ridiculous, to risible. Even the worst contemporary horrors tend to be slick affairs, but Slumber manages to be so bad it’s borderline entertaining.” South China Morning Post
“Sylvester McCoy is the major problem with the film’s third act, as calling his work “way over the top” would be a substantial understatement. The rest of the cast does their best, but this is a retread of a retread of a somewhat tired story. Perhaps it seemed to make more sense on the storyboard but in the end, Slumber just doesn’t cut the mustard.” Tail Slate
” …Slumber has a lot of ambition and while there’s a few awkward performances, manages to keep itself afloat with enough good moments to make it worthwhile, with Q the best reason why.” That Moment In
“Slumber (2017) is a lean, well-mounted and genuinely effective sleep paralysis based horror outing […] The last 15 of this 84-minute production, though a shade predictable, are a perfect payoff to the immersive buildup beforehand.” A Word of Dreams
Main cast and characters:
Maggie Q … Alice Arnolds
Will Kemp … Tom Arnolds
Sophia Wiseman … Niamh
Kristen Bush … Sarah Morgan
Sam Troughton … Charlie Morgan
Lucas Bond … Daniel Morgan
Honor Kneafsey … Emily Morgan
Sylvester McCoy … Amado – The Owners; Dracula (1979)
Vincent Andriano … Cam
William Hope … Malcolm
William Rhead … Liam
Zahra Wardhana-O’Reilly … Young Alice (as Zahra O’Reilly)
Okon Jones … Mr Futterman
William Todd-Jones … The Night Hag
Oliver Englehart … Mental Asylum Attendee
Slumber was released in the US on 1 December 2017.
This film should not be confused with the 2017 film of the same name directed by Darrell Wheat.