WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING
DIRECTOR: JON TURTELTAUB
COUNTRY: USA 1995
CINEMATOGRAPHY: PHEDON PAPAMICHAEL
MUSIC: RANDY EDELMAN
CAST: Sandra Bullock, Bill Pullman, Peter Gallagher, Peter Boyle, Glynis Johns, Jack Warden, Micole Mercurio
SUPER FEATURES: Nice story and acting work
Some films are hard not to like. The story may be sappy, occasionally good, and sometimes, there are one or more things that somehow make worth the while.
WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING is just such a film. With its twist ending, which kind of grabs us by surprise, this film manages to plod along and keep us in it. There is a time when one might think that the film is extending the thing a bit too long, but it makes up for it with one thing, one person. Sandra Bullock.
It's real easy to get into these kind of films and not take the whole thing seriously, or at least kind of laugh it off as just another fairytale. But then, what happens when one person, or several persons, are actually pretty good, and make the film believable and worth the time to sit through. One stays with it. And this film is the kind that won't let up on you, even if you are about to think the whole thing is getting boring.
It is the story of a young lady that works in a ticket counter in Chicago's subways. And she has fallen in love with a customer that comes by everyday at the same time. But she doesn't have the courage to say anything, or do anything, until one day, near Christmas, the guy is assaulted and robbed and falls into the train tracks. And with a train on the way, she takes on herself to save this guy.
And the hospital ends up thinking that she is part of the family. She visits him while he is in his coma, and one night tells him the whole story, which a member of the family happens to hear.
And the story here starts to get a bit complicated. And enjoyable. And unlike many films that stick with entertainment and do not give the actors the due amount of time they deserve, this film allows its actors to carry the story, which, with its ending, becomes a bit of a treat, actually not leaving us feeling cheated, or having to accept another Hollywood styled deux-ex-machina.
With excellent moments provided by Sandra Bullock, the other treat in this film is Jack Warden as an older gentleman that has been adopted by the family some fifty years before. He is the girl's confidant, but lacks the courage to help her as much as she may have needed.
Kudos should be given to the director of this film, whose (either) patience, or style, is a real treat for actors that can really do their thing. With a varied cast, the lesser roles are a bit over played, this is a very enjoyable piece of work, and the story, while not funny, is very enjoyable. The film has a leisured pace that is unlike many that you see these days.
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