Director: Mike Birbiglia
Starring: Mike Birbiglia, Lauren Ambrose, Carol Kane, James Rebhorn, Cristin Milioti
A feeling of self reflect and warmness washed over when I finished Sleepwalk with Me, the 2012 directorial debut of comedian Mike Birbiglia. These are two very different feelings that almost contradict each other but that makes sense for a film that is both laugh out loud hilarious and very depressing at times. The film follows Birbiglia’s character, Matt Pandamiglio, a struggling wanna be comedian and fictional version of Birbiglia himself as as he struggles to find his footing as a comedian while also dealing with Rapid Eye movement behavior disorder, a condition that makes him act out his dreams, creating some truly hilarious but also disturbing incidents. Matt is also dealing with his doubts about his Girlfriend, Abby (Lauren Ambrose). As I sat during Sleepwalk with Me, I was very impressed with how real the film felt. I felt myself connecting with Matt on so many levels with all the struggles and doubts that I myself have and many others I know have dealt with. From a directing standpoint, there’s nothing flashy about it but for a first film, it’s pretty damn impressive. I definitely recommend this film (and Don’t Think Twice, Mike Birbiglia’s second film and an even bigger improvement over this one) to anybody whose ever had a dream and even if life continues to make that dream seem impossible, they’ve pushed through it.
Next Film Recommendation: The Nice Guys (2016)