How to Sleep (1935)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Short  |  14 September 1935 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.5/10 from 430 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 3 critic

A humorous look at the problems people have trying to sleep.


0Check in
Won 1 Oscar. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Brash hoodlum Tom Connors enters Sing Sing cocksure of himself and disrespectful toward authority, but his tough but compassionate warden changes him.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Bette Davis, Arthur Byron
Documentary | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The official World War II US Government film statement defining the various enemies of the Allies and why they must be fought.

Directors: Frank Capra, Anatole Litvak
Stars: Walter Huston, Victor Bulwer-Lytton, Kai-Shek Chiang
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A nation preparing for war must match people with jobs they can do well. This film shows how a Ph.D., a chimp, and three dogs help design aptitude tests for men applying for work. The tests... See full summary »

Director: George Sidney
Stars: John Nesbitt, Eddy Chandler, Mark Daniels
Movie Pests (1944)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A humorous look at the inconsiderate pests whose annoying habits make enjoying a movie impossible.

Director: Will Jason
Stars: Pete Smith, William Bailey, Margaret Bert
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In this Pete Smith Specialty, Dr. Harold E. Edgerton demonstrates stroboscopic photography, which he helped develop. This process allows us to see in slow motion what happens during events ... See full summary »

Director: George Sidney
Stars: Clarence Curtis, Harold E. Edgerton, Tex Harris
Handlebars (1933)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A humorous history of the bicycle since 1819.

Director: Jules White
Stars: Pete Smith, Nell Craig, Nelson Eddy
Certificate: Passed Short | Fantasy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Boogie-woogie band-leader Ted Barry is outside the pearly gates. Because of Ted's musical background, the gatekeeper points him in the direction of the Hall of Music section, where he is ... See full summary »

Director: Josef Berne
Stars: Frederick Brady, Mary Elliott, Eric Blore
Penny Wisdom (1937)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A "Pete Smith Specialty" on cookery.

Director: David Miller
Stars: Prudence Penny, Harold Minjir, Gertrude Short
One Got Fat (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

This bicycle-safety film shows children what can happen when bicycles are driven carelessly and recklessly.

Director: Dale Jennings
Stars: Ralph Hulett, Charles Hagens, Dick Hutto
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

This MGM short, which stars an all-dog cast, is about Trixie and Fido and their evil boss. They all work at the Dogville Department Store but the boss has his eye on Trixie and so frames ... See full summary »

Directors: Zion Myers, Jules White
Documentary | Short | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The story of Donald Campbell, son of the late Sir Malcolm Campbell, British champion auto-racer, and his efforts to survive driving a jet-powered boat at record speeds on Lake Meade, Nevada... See full summary »

Director: Konstantin Kalser
Stars: Jay Jackson, Donald Campbell, Leo Villa
Lambchops (1929)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

George and Gracie enter an elegant drawing room, looking everywhere for something. Turns out, they're looking for the audience, and when George spots the camera, they start in on their ... See full summary »

Director: Murray Roth
Stars: George Burns, Gracie Allen


Complete credited cast:
Robert Benchley ...
Host / Narrator


A lecturer seated at a desk promises an informative film about how to sleep; it's a sequel to and inspired by "How to stay awake," which put his audience to sleep. He plans to examine the causes of sleep, the causes of insomnia, and recent research on sleep, including a time-lapse film of a man changing positions 55 times during an 8-hour rest: why exercise, he asks, when you can sleep like a top? The film instructs one on how to get a drink of water during the night without waking completely, and other useful skills for the insomniac. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Short


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

14 September 1935 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Featured as an extra on the DVD of the Marx Brothers film A Night at the Opera (1935). See more »


Featured in Added Attractions: The Hollywood Shorts Story (2002) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Still funny
12 December 2006 | by (The Hague, Netherlands) – See all my reviews

'How to Sleep' is the Oscar-winning short comedy for the year 1935. It is a mockumentary, one of the earliest I have seen myself, on how to fall asleep. The narrator speaks about a man who has trouble falling asleep and we get to see the man and his actions. From time to time the narrator puts in a joke with references to alcoholics and the fictional names for events on the screen including sleeping positions.

It is amazing how funny this short film still is. Apparently in cinemas it was shown before Marx Brothers-films and it may not be a coincidence that their films still work today as well. It is not too long, keeps our attention quite easily and gives us many smiles and some good laughs. If you have the chance to see it then do so.

10 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
DVD Availability exw
Just on TCM MovieFella23
Discuss How to Sleep (1935) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: