After watching a super sappy movie last weekend, you can read all about it here, I decided that this weekend, since HBO was showing Wonder Woman, that I would head over to Netflix and pick out a horror movie. First on my list was Before I Wake. I liked the Nightmare on Elm Street kind of premise this movie had so I figured why not. Keep reading to see if this movie delivered.
After losing a child of their own in a freak drowning accident, Jessie, played by Kate Bosworth, and Mark, played by an unrecognizable Thomas Jane, decide that it’s time to not only open their home but their hearts and foster a child. Approved to be foster parents by Natalie, played by Annabeth Gish, the couple of given Cody, played by Jacob Tremblay. What the couple soon finds out is that Cody forces himself to stay awake at night by using any means necessary. He’s a kid so don’t think I’m writing like he’s a junkie. For him it means a lot of sugar and caffeine. Why does he want to deprive himself of sleep so much though? Maybe it’s because his dreams come to life. While he’s in a happy dreaming place it’s perfect and beautiful, but when his nightmares come so does the Canker Man which is not a good thing. Will this family be able to help Cody or will they just become another one the victims of his terrible nightmares?
While an interesting movie, this movie is in no way a horror movie. Yes, it has some cheap jump scares, but honestly I cried during this movie more than I was scared. Cody has some issues of his own and just needs some help, it’s basically a movie about a child’s manifestation of something scary because he doesn’t understand it. Don’t get me wrong, this was a good movie, but it just wasn’t the horror movie that I was looking for. I wanted something to be scary, but it wasn’t. For a horror movie it had a kind of happy ending that really didn’t clear things up and it seriously wasn’t a horror movie. I have to say that I really hate this things when movies are pegged wrong. I would have called this movie a mystery / suspense movie and not a horror movie. Having a scary creature doesn’t make this movie a horror movie. Sorry, but that’s not the way it works.
Saying all of that though, the cast works great together and it really makes this movie work. Kate Bosworth and Thomas Jane are really believable as parents who are trying to get over their son’s death, but still placing the blame on each other and still have other issues to work out. The acting done by the talented Jacob Tremblay brings this story together and having Annabeth Gish in there as a small part helps as well. The cast is something that gave this movie a little more credit than it probably deserved.
Overall I give this movie a 3 out of 5.
Even though this is a good movie, it’s still not a horror movie and that kind of ruined the experience for me just a little. When you go into one movie expecting one thing and come out with something completely different it’s just annoying. I did enjoy the plot and the overall outcome of the movie though so I would recommend it, but just don’t go in thinking it’s a horror movie and if you’re looking for a horror movie then look somewhere else.