Forty-year-old Christine Lucas wakes up in bed with a man she does not know, in an unfamiliar house. The man explains that he is her husband, Ben, and that she suffered brain damage from a car accident ten years earlier. Christine wakes up every morning with no memory of her life from her early twenties onwards. Christine receives treatment from Dr. Nasch, a neurologist at a local hospital who provides her a camera to record her thoughts and progress each day, and calls her every morning to remind her to watch the video in the camera. Soon, she starts to discover the truth around her. Written by
(at around 47 mins) During a conversation with Ben at his school, Christine drops her bag to the floor and approaches Ben to give him a hug. Camera cuts to wide angle of the whole classroom with the hugging couple yet there is no bag on the floor. See more »
Who are you?
I'm your husband... Ben.
We got married in 1999. That was 14 years ago. Christine, you're 40.
[hands her her clothes]
You had an accident. It was a bad accident. You had head injuries. And you have problems remembering things.
What things? What...?
Everything. You store up information for a day, and when you wake up in the morning, it's all gone. You're back to your early 20s. You'll be okay. Just... trust me.
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The premise of Before I Go to Sleep is quite a good one. A woman wakes up each day with no memory beyond her early twenties; soon she begins to realise that some dark secrets are being hidden from her. It's sort of in similar territory to Christopher Nolan's early neo-noir Memento (2000), which was also a mystery/thriller about a character with a short-term memory loss condition. Like that one, here one of the interesting angles is that the central character has no idea if their friends really are friends or actually enemies. It's true that several aspects of the storyline require you to stretch your belief somewhat; however, many thrillers are similar in this respect, so this wasn't such a deal-breaker for me. The problem I essentially had is that while the idea may be pretty intriguing, ultimately the pay-off is somewhat mediocre and conventional. Piece by piece the puzzle is slowly unravelled but it doesn't end up presenting us with a picture that is very inspired or interesting and you sort of ask yourself 'is that it?'
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