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I'll Sleep When I'm Dead (2003)

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A former gangster reenters the criminal underworld after his brother suspiciously commits suicide.


Mike Hodges


Trevor Preston
1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Clive Owen ... Will
Charlotte Rampling ... Helen
Jonathan Rhys Meyers ... Davey
Malcolm McDowell ... Boad
Jamie Foreman ... Mickser
Ken Stott ... Turner
Sylvia Syms ... Mrs. Bartz
Alexander Morton ... Victor
John Surman John Surman ... Pathologist
Paul Mohan ... Coroner
Damian Dibben ... David Myers
Amber Batty Amber Batty ... Sheridan
Daisy Beaumont ... Stella, Drugs Seeker
Lidija Zovkic Lidija Zovkic ... Philippa, Model
Geoff Bell ... Arnie Ryan


Will Graham is a gangster who has left the life of crime and is living in the countryside. He comes out of hiding to investigate the death of his brother when he learns that he committed suicide. Charlotte Rampling is his old girlfriend who owns a restaurant. Boad is the villain responsible for the bad things that happened to Will's brother. Written by Andrea Barney <andrea808@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The hypnotic thriller from the director of Croupier and the classic Get Carter See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, a rape scene, violent images and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

Paramount Classics





Release Date:

30 April 2004 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Dead Simple See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,415, 20 June 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$358,804, 14 November 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Clive Owen had previously worked with Mike Hodges on Croupier (1998). See more »


Will: Look at me. Look at what I've become. I sometimes don't talk to another living soul for fucking days, weeks. I'm always on the move. I trust no one, nothing. And it's got fuck-all to do with escape or withdrawal or fear. It's grief. For a life wasted. And now there's Davey. Another fucking wasted life. And I'm gonna find out why.
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Featured in O Lucky Malcolm! (2006) See more »


Composed by Simon Fisher-Turner (as Simon Fisher Turner) and Robin Rimbaud
Recorded by Simon Fisher-Turner (as SFT) and Scanner
Published by Mute Song Ltd and 3MV Music Publishing/Big Life Music Ltd
Courtesy of Sulphur Records
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User Reviews

Thought provoking movie!
17 November 2004 | by mariawong_99See all my reviews

I have read through about 20 of the users comments after watching this movie earlier tonight on DVD. Most viewers seem to be rather disappointed with this film mainly because they had expectations of the film based on genre, director's and actors' previous work both of which I have seen very little before. The film had my attention from the beginning till the end and I found it very thought provoking.

Will was a gangster who had turned away from crime after a break down (indication of severe depression?). Sometimes when people get overloaded with negative emotions like guilt they can turn into the total opposite of who they once were. As Will mentioned himself : grief about a wasted life. I think this indicates guilt. He coped by turning his back to the world he knew, but also the person he loved most, his brother Davey whom he therefore was not able to help move away from the crime life.Imagine his anger but also the guilt he must have experienced to find his brother raped and having taking his own life! Another wasted life! He could have done something about that but HAD NOT because he ran away from life. In the interactions with former associates and ex-girl friend Helen he established who he had become. Also showing them that they played no role in his life anymore, emotional or otherwise. For his brother who was still important to him he was not able to do anything anymore (and unable via police) except to come up for him by discovering the reason for his death and revenging it. The only way to do that was to take on his former identity again, because the new Will could not do that. Imagine the horror that his brother was hated for behaving the way he himself had before his departure. (Of course this is never a valid reason to rape someone! Rape is hideous crime!) Charming, but cocksure and arrogant!! For Davey Will had always been his role model!!! Davey never got to know the new (more real?) Will. Instead he had lived like Will basing his self-esteem on Will's former reputation as well. Fancy the pain of discovering that! By shooting Boad he kills himself; by intensifying the guilt which had taken over his life. This was exactly as Helen predicted when she said that he was not getting out of it because he wanted to die himself! Nor Clive Owen or Charlotte Rampling acted stiffly out of incompetence, but merely because it was required for their roles of people who had died emotionally a long time ago already! I have greatly enjoyed this movie. It made me think deeply about emotions, motivations an behavior. The above is my interpretation of these, (which doesn't mean I am right).

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