Fancy some dark genre cinema you probably haven’t heard of? No problem. With horror secret tip “Sleep” airing on TV this Monday, you could be in for a treat in this regard.
When horror movies involve a visit to a hotel, it usually doesn’t exactly end in a relaxing getaway. “Psycho”, “Shining”, “Room 1408” or “Cold Prey” are prominent examples of this. Far less well known is the German mystery horror “Schlaf”, which airs today, the night of October 30 to 31 at 0:25 on ZDF. Here, too, the protagonists experience the true horror in a horror hotel.
THAT’S WHAT “SLEEP “
For some time now, flight attendant Marlene (Sandra Hüller) has been driven mad by horrible nightmares, all of which seem to take place in a small village. When she finds out that her dreams are about the forest hotel “Sonnenhügel”, she travels there from Hamburg to finally get to the bottom of the tormenting mystery.
She eventually suffers a nervous breakdown and falls into a comatose sleep when she learns of the reasons for her nightmares, and she is committed to a psychiatric ward. Her daughter Mona (Gro Swantje Kohlhof) now sets out to find out the causes on her own. In the process, she comes into contact with the peculiar inhabitants of the village – and learns of dark forces from times long past…
FULL QUOTES AND TERRIFIC ACTORS
In the official FILMSTARTS review “Schlaf” could only pick up a solid 3 out of 5 stars, but our critic Lars-Christian Daniels describes the horror film in his conclusion as “German genre cinema with outstanding leading actresses and exciting approaches. “
Although “Sleep” seems a bit too confused in the second half, director Michael Venus proves his knowledge of horror film history and repeatedly builds on references to genre classics like William Friedkin’s “The Exorcist” or “The Sixth Sense” by M. Night Shyamalan. In addition, the viewers* are offered the whole range of emotions through “a voluptuous nude performance in the style of modern theater productions to the brutal fight for survival in a dim laundry room […].”
Indeed, “Sleep” is not just about the eerie setting of a remote hotel complex, but about the biting fear of the titular sleep, which in the hands of Michael Venus lead to an often overconstructed, but quite effective condition that over time no longer allows you to differentiate between reality and dream.
The fact that we can thoroughly recommend the film to you is largely due to the actresses Gro Swantje Kohlhof and Sandra Hüller, who give their all here. The review says in this regard: “The two of them once again deliver a rousing performance in the idiosyncratic horror home movie […].” “Sleep” may not be a masterpiece in the end, but you can still risk a look tonight.