Horror Movie: Parasomnia (R; 2008; 103 min.)

I can sum up this movie in just a few words: freaky, funky unbelievable noir-type gore-fest. There. Oh, you want to know more? Okay, read on…

Parasomnia is a medical condition where one sleeps most of the time, awaking only occasionally and for only short periods of time. Somehow, despite having this Sleeping Beauty-like syndrome and living in a psych ward (a psych ward that has few locks, is right down the hall from rehab, houses a hooded serial killer standing in chains and allows visitors to roam about freely no less), Laura has beautifully coiffed long hair and can talk and walk with no problem!

As you can tell, you must suspend a lot of belief to watch this fright-fest. Because you also meet Danny, who wanders down the hall from visiting his friend in rehab and discovers Laura, immediately falling in love with her and getting her doctor to tell him all about her in less than five minutes. He also discovers the crazed serial killer in the next room, Brian Volpe, who has managed to hypnotize Laura through the walls and has invaded her freaky, crazy dreams. This is different, mind you, from how he usually hypnotizes people…normally his eyes alone, backlit with spider webs, can do the job! Anyhow, Danny decides to free Laura from Volpe’s hold by kidnapping her from the grossly-understaffed  hospital and taking her back to his apartment. Bad move, Danny!

Danny awakes to Laura trying to slash him with a mighty long knife, even by slasher-movie standards. She eventually falls asleep again, and, unfazed, he heads out for a bite to eat, propping her in front of a TV. When he returns, he discovers she has brutally tortured and murdered his neighbor. So he starts to clean up while she sleeps again. When the cops arrive to investigate, she manages to eviscerate one of the investigators before once again falling asleep!

The story continues on in this manner, with Laura sleeping and waking, Danny being dumbly in love, bloody gory slasher fests, and a serial killer who escapes after hypnotizing a nurse, then comes for Laura. It is actually hard to watch this movie…hard to watch and hard to watch it go on and on and on while it goes quickly down the drain. There are a few cool special effects, but they are completely outweighed by the ridiculous storyline. My recommendation: if you’re dreaming of a good horror movie, just keep dreaming: this one will put you to sleep.

  • Top Scare: Serial Killer
  • Heartbeats: 2 out of 5
  • Gore Factor: 4 out of 5
  • Suspense Factor: 3 1/4 out of 5
  • Recommended for: 17 and up, due to crazed violence, gore, cussing and nudity

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