DVD review: 'Insomnia' Blu-ray edition
Compared to the fractured timeline storytelling of “Memento,” the noir-ish comic book world of his Batman epics, the violent alchemy of “The Prestige,” and now the layered semi-
But don’t blow this one off as a by-the-numbers formula cop drama. Screenwriter Hillary Seitz’s adaptation of a 1997 Norwegian film of the same name focuses on star LAPD homicide cop Will Dormer (Al Pacino) and his partner, Hap (Martin Donovan), who are sent to remote Nightmute, Alaska, to help solve the grisly murder of a teenage girl. Dormer is already losing sleep over an Internal Affairs investigation back home (the real reason his superiors have sent him away), and the endless days in the Land of the Midnight Sun are only aggravating his restless condition. When a second death occurs that he may or may not have caused deliberately, and the girl’s elusive killer begins tormenting Dormer with his own guilty conscience, the cop finds himself in a waking nightmare that can only end in an eternal nap for one or more of the people involved.
Hilary Swank is a heartbreaker as the dedicated rookie Alaskan cop who idolizes Dormer, Robin Williams raises goosebumps as the creepy antagonist and Pacino is at peak power as the deeply flawed and world-weary policeman on the edge. Meanwhile, Nolan visually manages to pull off the darkest of noir storytelling in broad, endless daylight.
DVD features: New Blu-ray edition contains four featurettes, including a conversation between Pacino and Nolan, two making-of documentaries and “Eyes Wide Open: The Insomniac’s World.”
— Gene Triplett
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