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Submitted by Druss on Fri, 2012-05-25 17:48

Insomnia is a Christopher Nolan film starring Al Pacino, Robin Williams and Hillary Swank. The film is effectively a psychological suspense murder thriller where the good guy has to - through a series of circumstance - work with the bad guy. Pacino and Williams are top notch and Swank is a little overeager. The plot is, even if a little contrived, intriguing, and the dialogue delivery well above par.

However, in a bid to add the je ne sais quoi that can elevate a movie a couple of rungs above the rest, the story has been set in a remote town in Alaska during summer. The town is flooded with sunlight through day and night which affects Pacino's sleep cycle (hence the title) which, in turn, affects his mental faculties leading to a compromise of his values. Alaska is stunning and the eternal sunshine adds a certain buzz and subtle tension to the atmosphere. But the insomnia is, frankly, not well presented and lends more of a meandering feel to the storyline rather than being an active part thereof.

The solid performances of Pacino and Williams are what hold this movie together. Their interplay and Williams' subtle psychological nudges that draw Pacino down the rabbit-hole of guilt are particularly fascinating for much of the movie. This unfortunately completely unravels in the last 20 minutes or so when the movie dwindles into an insipid, hollywood-sy climax which is poorly scripted, acted and directed. It is almost as if Nolan took a vacation and handed the reins over to Alan Smithee for this crucial section of the film which was ultimately, disappointing. It could have been a lot better.