7.3/10
12,293
97 user 68 critic

Insomnia (1997)

Not Rated | | Crime, Mystery, Thriller | 29 May 1998 (USA)
In a Norwegian city with a 24-hour daylight cycle a Swedish murder investigator has been brought in on a special case. Sleep deprived, he makes a horrible mistake which is discovered by the killer he has been hunting.

Director:

Erik Skjoldbjærg

Writers:

Nikolaj Frobenius (screenplay), Erik Skjoldbjærg (screenplay)
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Maria Mathiesen Maria Mathiesen ... Tanja Lorentzen
Stellan Skarsgård ... Jonas Engström
Sverre Anker Ousdal ... Erik Vik
Gisken Armand ... Hilde Hagen
Kristian Figenschow Kristian Figenschow ... Arne Zakariassen (as Kristian Fr. Figenschow)
Thor Michael Aamodt Thor Michael Aamodt ... Tom Engen
Frode Rasmussen ... Chief of Police
Bjørn Moan ... Eilert
Maria Bonnevie ... Ane
Marianne O. Ulrichsen ... Frøya
Bjørn Floberg ... Jon Holt
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Storyline

In a Norwegian city with a 24-hour daylight cycle, a Swedish murder investigator is brought in to find an elusive killer. But when the officer accidentally kills his own partner and covers it up, a double sided game of cat-and-mouse ensues. Written by Daniel Jos. Leary

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Den som synder, sover ikke. [He who sins, does not sleep.]


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Insomnia homepage

Country:

Norway

Language:

Norwegian | Swedish

Release Date:

29 May 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bezsennosc See more »

Filming Locations:

Nyksund, Norway See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,366, 31 May 1998

Gross USA:

$227,569

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$227,569
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film is part of the Criterion Collection, spine #47. See more »

Goofs

When Jonas is riding in the car during the bus chase scene, the blood dripping down his head is in different position than when he looks in the mirror to wipe it away. See more »

Quotes

Ane: I never remember how people look. Just the impression they make.
See more »


Soundtracks

Hos Tanja
Music by Alanïa
Rune Lindbæk/Ole Mjøs/Thorbjørn Brundtland
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Why remake a good thing?
16 December 2002 | by esbarnardSee all my reviews

An excellent psychological drama about a cooly repressed detective unable to own up to causing the accidental death of his partner, at the same time he is persuing an author suspected of killing his young girlfriend. The detective story isn't important here - the detective has no trouble locating the killer, understanding his motives, or "solving" the crime. What is interesting is the detective's inablility to deal with his problems and face life truthfully, metaphorically illustrated by his inability to block out the sunlight and sleep. Stellan Skarsgard gives a very good performance as the detective struggling to keep control of himself and the situation. As he becomes more and more tired, his life and his desires race out of control, and his need to maintain his facade causes him to make decisions that take him to the edge of catastropy.

This film is understated in a way that the 2002 Al Pacino remake missed the boat on. It takes place in Norway, and the director resisted the temptation to show us a travelog of cute Norwegian villages. Most of the action takes place in non-descript rooms, suffused with the cold grey light of the arctic sun. The acting is understated and viewers are left to understand motivations without explicit explanation. The film is engrossing from beginning to end, and I'll never understand why Hollywood feels it needs to try to do better - it rarely can.


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