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Sleepless aka "Non ho sonno" [Blu-ray]
(Dario Argento, 2001)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Medusa Film
Video: Tiberius Film
Region: FREE (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 24,174,450,067 bytes
Feature Size: 22,050,527,232 bytes
Video Bitrate: 20.00 Mbps
Case: Yellow DVD-sized Blu-ray case
Release date: March 7th, 2013
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1783 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1783 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio German 1985 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1985
kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
•German Trailer (1:22)
• Italian Trailer (1:22)
• Making Of (15:09)
• Argento Interview (6:49 - English)
• Image Gallery (3:05)
Description: Dario Argento's Sleepless is an unexpected delight: an involving, scary, enthralling thriller that is nevertheless hurt by some undeniable flaws. As usual, trumped-up plot contrivances and behavioral inconsistencies infect an Argento outing like the bubonic plague, which some fans defend as irrelevant in the Italian horror genre known as the giallo, of which Argento has contributed some good (Suspiria), passable (Tenebre), and bad (Phenomena) entries. I disagree. No film is impervious to common criticism, and since Sleepless isn't some blood-and-guts showcase -- it's a suspense thriller with a serial killer at the center of it all -- illogic and implausibilities do indeed qualify as demerits here. But for the most part the film is gruesomely affecting in all the ways intended, successful at enveloping the viewer from start to finish. Overall, it isn't a particularly great piece of work; yet as a work of gut-wrenching terror, it gets the job done. And unlike his fellow giallo counterpart's nadir, Lucio Fulci's The New York Ripper, which featured a dastardly fiend slicing up beautiful women while quacking like Donald Duck during the acts, Sleepless is assured stuff and devoid of insufferable unintentional laughs. (Not to mention, it scares you exactly when intended -- an accomplishment not to be taken lightly in light of all the botched thrillers that come our unfortunate way more often than not.)
In every possible respect, Sleepless is Dario Argento's attempt at returning to his traditional roots. Obviously stung by mounting criticism of his recent works, the Italian maestro has set out to win back those disillusioned within the ranks of his fan base. Reaction appears to be mixed, although this is more a reflection on the attitudes of Argento enthusiasts rather than the general opinion amongst critics. Most of who deem Sleepless as a welcome return to form for the director.
Max Von Sydow takes up the role of retired cop Moretti who is disturbed to find a spate of recent murders being pinned on an individual he had attempted to apprehend some 17 years earlier. All the signs were that this particular criminal had subsequently died after the event. What made the case so infamous at the time was that the prime suspect in the inquiry was a dwarf who became notorious for his violent temper through years of taunting. Morreti is unconvinced by rumours of the dwarf's survival but begins his own amateur investigation, as the bodies mount up.
Moretti is soon joined by Giacomo (Stefano Dionisi) who, as a child, witnessed the brutal murder of his mother - allegedly by the infamous Dwarf. Now a grown man, he persuades Moretti to allow him to contribute to the investigation. Both men dismiss the idea of the dwarf and believe the killings to have been committed by a copycat. What follows is a stylish giallo thriller reinforced by a script that thunders along at breakneck speed. All the old Argento hallmarks are present, from glove-wearing killers to awesome Steadicam action sequences, and some extended murder set pieces. Probably the most effective of these is the first where the killer stalks a girl on an empty train.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Sleepless, also known as "Non ho sonno", is on Blu-ray out of Germany offering a vibrant, rich, textured image in 1080P. The single-layered transfer has a modest bitrate but the image quality offers decent contrast, sharp visuals and fine grain. The film is relatively modern and the visuals are ultra- clean, and very film-like with a consistent heaviness coupled with a highly detailed presentation. This Blu-ray has a strong HD image producing an rewarding presentation.
HERE: There are two different versions of
Dario Argento’s shocker “Non Ho Sonno” worldwide.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
No original Italian track but DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround in both English and German DUBs (16-bit) with a lossy German Dolby stereo option. The audio is strong as well - a notch below the superlative video but still exporting some heavy bass depth and a decent high-end in thescore credited to the legendary band Goblin (The Other Hell, The Bloodstained Shadow, Deep Red, Suspira) that runs beside the film with plenty of Giallo charm. There is a segment with Tchaichowsky's Swan Lake. There are optional German subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region FREE playable worldwide.
Some English-friendly supplements with a 1/4 hour 'Making of' featurette, a 7-minute, modern, Argento interview (both English), German and Italian trailers of the film and a lame-ass image gallery.
November 8th, 2017
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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