In 2074, when the mob wants to get rid of someone, the target is sent 30 years into the past, where a hired gun awaits. Someone like Joe, who one day learns the mob wants to 'close the loop' by transporting back Joe's future self.
A shy student trying to reach his family in Ohio, and a gun-toting tough guy trying to find the Last Twinkie and a pair of sisters trying to get to an amusement park join forces to travel across a zombie-filled America.
After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.
David O. Russell
Robert De Niro
Dispatched from his basement room on an errand for his widowed mother, slacker Jeff might discover his destiny (finally) when he spends the day with his unhappily married brother as he tracks his possibly adulterous wife.
Comedian Mike Birbiglia lost 20 pounds to play the role he based on himself. See more »
When Matt is working the bar and trying to speak with Abby about having a "breather," the beer bottles on the bar appear and disappear between shots. See more »
I really feel like our whole lives, no matter how low our self esteem gets, there's a part of us that thinks, 'I have a secret, special skill that no one knows about.' And, eventually, we meet someone who's like, "You have a secret, special skill." And you're like, "I know! So do you!" And that's love.
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As someone who has considered Mike Birbiglia to be one of my favorite people for the better part of the past decade, it's no surprise that I was greatly looking forward to his filmmaking debut as writer and director on the autobiographical Sleepwalk with Me. A re-telling of his personal experiences with sleepwalking, his genesis as a career stand-up comedian and a relationship, Sleepwalk opens up the world to a story that Birbiglia has been telling on stage for quite a few years now.
One of the most pleasant surprises about the film is that none of it really feels stale at all. As with many stand-up comedians who try their hand at working in film or television, he incorporates plenty of his stage material into the screenplay for Sleepwalk, yet I found myself laughing at the same jokes that have made me laugh hundreds of times already. There's an ease to the way that Birbiglia naturally slides his more conversational material into the actual narrative of the piece, where the jokes come smoothly as opposed to feeling like stand-up that's been reworked into a narrative formatting, which is often the case with these kind of endeavors.
Sleepwalk is a very personal journey that Birbiglia invites the audience along to, and despite being primarily a comedic work he's not afraid to bluntly open himself up to the darker shades of his life or to his own faults and mistakes. Matt Pandamiglio, the subtly named lead character played by Birbiglia here, is stubborn, lazy and often selfish and Birbgilia doesn't hide from these kind of human flaws that could turn some of the audience away from him. It's in his approach to life that I've always found myself able to admire Birbiglia most of all, and that shines through plenty in his character and in the message of the film overall.
This is a guy who has been given plenty of reason to complain or take on the kind of malicious, shock style of comedy that has become increasingly popular over the past few decades, but there's a natural affability to Birbiglia that comes through no matter what the situation. He's never one to walk around with a chip on his shoulder blaming others for his problems, but instead he just continues to roll with the punches and approach life with a sort of casual ambivalence that I've always wished I could have.
Sleepwalk with Me combines Birbgilia's knack for observational humor so seamlessly with his auto-biographical work, and as a filmmaker he has made an impressive first feature that shows promise for him to follow in the tradition of other greats who have made the crossover from stand-up to film. While the film doesn't ever hit hard enough on any level to make a significant impact that will last with me, there's a very Woody Allen-esque approach that he takes in the way he structures it that comes so easily to him. This would be impressive for any comedian to take to, but especially someone who is making his first film. Birbiglia is able to take clear influence from Allen in the storytelling while also remaining very true to himself as a comedian and as a new filmmaker, and I look forward to hopefully seeing more from him on this side of things in the near future.
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