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Before I Go to Sleep

6.31 h 31 min2014X-RayR
A woman wakes up every day, remembering nothing as a result of a traumatic accident in her past. One day, new terrifying truths emerge that force her to question everyone around her.
Rowan Joffe
Nicole KidmanColin FirthMark Strong
English [CC]
Audio languages

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Relativity Media
R (Restricted)
Content advisory
Foul languagenuditysexual contentviolence
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4.2 out of 5 stars

2476 global ratings

  1. 57% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 19% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 14% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 6% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 5% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

annieReviewed in the United States on August 8, 2021
2.0 out of 5 stars
Not great
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The movie was "meh." First, Nicole Kidman is supposed to have a British accent, but it's pretty poor. Second, there is an enormous flaw in the movie, which is the real problem. Stop reading if you don't want to spoil the ending.

So husband Ben puts her in a care home and divorces her. At the end, he says if I had known what was happening to you I would have been there for you (or something to that effect). Okay, so he puts her in the care home, divorces her, someone else checks her out of that care home and for four years Ben has zero contact with the care home. Doesn't bother asking "hey, where did my wife to?" She is an amnesiac. Who checked her out? Who was paying for the care home? If Ben was, wouldn't the care home have contacted him to say "hey, Ben, you can stop paying because you checked your wife out."

But for the sappy ending, he must say the "I care for you" baloney. If that were my husband, even if I had memory failure, it wouldn't mean my brain had gone to total mush. I'd want to know why he didn't bother checking on me for four bloody years. Bottom line: some suspense here but it's not a well-crafted movie.
20 people found this helpful
MiniReviewed in the United States on April 16, 2019
3.0 out of 5 stars
Forgetting Mr. Darcy...
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Christine: Who are you?
Ben: I'm your husband... Ben.
Christine: What?
Ben: We got married in 1999. That was fourteen years ago. Christine, you're forty.

Christine (Nicole Kidman) is amnesiac. Every night, as she sleeps, her memory leaves her, and she wakes up with no recollection of who she is, where she is, and who her husband is. She doesn’t know her real age, and how long she’d been that way. Each day is a puzzle for her, and snippets of information come and go like a puff of smoke. Her husband Ben (Colin Firth) is there for her in every step of the way, protecting her from her painful flashbacks, and from the problems with their marriage. But Christine wants answers. Her flashbacks get more and more explicit with each passing day. Flashes of violence attack her as if from nowhere. There's a man with a scar. And there's blood — lots of it. There’s also a former friend. She also has a son, or HAD a son? All the pieces of the puzzle come together as she seeks the help of a neurological psychologist who tells her to keep a video diary of the things she remembers, so she could watch it the next day. (The psychologist calls her to remind her of this everyday.) But does she want to know the truth? She does. Should she know the truth though? Ben keeps lying to her, and he says it’s for her own good. Maybe it is…

Domestic thrillers like this are huge now. GONE GIRL set the stage, and now it’s dominating the book and video-streaming shelves. It’s why my writing is doing so well. People love this stuff. As far as psychological thrillers go, BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP is suspenseful, gritty and surprising. The mystery aspect is also good — and I love the foggy atmosphere throughout the movie. Is it the best I’ve seen? No. Far from it. But it’s not terrible either. Nicole Kidman does an amazing job here, but her English accent is not as good as I expected. It sounds way too clipped, surprising coming from an Australian actress who does mostly English or American accents in films. Her performance is excellent though. Colin Firth is also great in this movie. He’s a far cry from Mr. Darcy here, that’s for sure! Downsides? The plot is slow-paced, but this changes toward the end, where the ending is a little too rushed for my liking. There's something else that’s troubling, but I won’t into it now. I am reading a novel with a super sinister plot and character, and I’ll delve into the subject in that review. BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP is good, but not great. I didn’t read the book, so I cannot comment on it. The movie tanked at the box office, but don't let that fool you. This category of fiction is hot now, but some movies aren't meant for the big screen, and this is one of them. It would have been better off as a Netflix Original. I give this three and a half out of five caramel iced coffees.
25 people found this helpful
REalHousewifeReviewed in the United States on April 19, 2021
2.0 out of 5 stars
I'm still trying to figure out what the heck happened here
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So... her husband left her due to a mental illness (hers) and takes her son away and just forgets about her. Enough so that a madman can take over and pretend HE is her husband? But the son comes back at the end.... so he's NOT dead.

WTF did I just watch?

This movie is a hot mess. It is like a negative, very sad, bad attitude 50 First Dates.

My advice is to watch 50 First Dates again.
13 people found this helpful
Double HappinessReviewed in the United States on December 31, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
I guessed the twist, but I was wrong
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This movie is the dark version of "50 First Dates" and "Groundhog Day."

I enjoyed this movie.
I knew that there was a twist.
I guessed that the twist involved the therapist.
I thought that maybe he wasn't a therapist at all - - maybe he was the attacker.
But I was wrong.

The therapist, Dr. Nash, had me wondering.
Imagine how believable or unbelievable this is . . .

(1) Dr. Nash calls Christine - - every single morning.
He obviously has to wait for the time that he knows that Ben has left for work,
so he knows that Christine will be alone (because these visits are in secret).

(2) He introduces himself over the phone (for the hundredth time)
and tells Christine to go find the camera and watch it, and that he will come to pick her up.

(3) He then gets in his car and drives to Christine's house.
We don't know how long that drive is.

(4) He picks her up and drives her somewhere far off, in the middle of nowhere.
That is a long drive.

(5) They talk.
Same conversation every morning.
Hopefully, some new conversation, making some progress.
We don't know how long this "session" is.

(6) He drives her home.
They were in the middle of nowhere, so this is a long drive.

(7) He drives from her home to his office.
We don't know how far that is.

So, this absolutely has to take up Dr. Nash's entire morning.
Then he has to face whatever patients he has for the rest of the day.
And, remember, he is working for Christine for free.
And he bought that camera for her -- that camera was not cheap.
Not to mention how much he must spend on gasoline every day for all of those long drives.

Why would he go through all of this?
What is in it for him?
And, what happens on the weekends, when Ben is home, so Dr. Nash cannot call?
And, what happens if Dr. Nash calls, and Ben might answer - - maybe Ben took a sick day or a vacation day or was running late.

What kind of a therapist goes through all of this, giving away every morning for free?
It was said that this went on for many weeks.

What kind of a therapist would work with a very sick woman, in secret?

Why would he drive her far off to the middle of nowhere?
Why couldn't he just go into her house to talk to her?
Or meet her in a public place?
Or meet her in his office?
He could keep their sessions secret without taking her off on long drives.

I also wondered - - after Dr. Nash brings Christine home, what does she do for the rest of the day, until Ben comes home from work?
17 people found this helpful
Christina ReynoldsReviewed in the United States on December 9, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
Watchable for all the wrong reasons
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Before I Go to Sleep is a 2014 mystery psychological thriller film written and directed by Rowan Joffé and based on the 2011 novel Before I Go to Sleep by S. J. Watson; this film stars Nicole Kidman, Mark Strong, Colin Firth, and Anne-Marie Duff. Christine (Kidman), an Anterograde amnesiac caused by a traumatic incident, begins questioning everything about her life when terrifying new truths present themselves.

As usual, this is the point where I am compelled to overshare about details of my life that have little to no relevancy to this film by openly admitting I have the strangest obsession with Colin Firth. In my defense, this is not entirely my fault, and is purely the result of having taken a ‘Romantic Comedies’ class (Before you ask, YES, it was an elective during my undergraduate career). Having seen and been forced to analyzed Firth’s behavior in titles such as 𝘗𝘳𝘪𝘥𝘦 𝘈𝘯𝘥 𝘗𝘳𝘦𝘫𝘶𝘥𝘪𝘤𝘦 and 𝘉𝘳𝘪𝘥𝘨𝘦𝘵'𝘴 𝘑𝘰𝘯𝘦𝘴 𝘋𝘪𝘢𝘳𝘺 my attachment to him as a person has transcended above a level that should be humanly possible: Any moment he is seen on screen my simpleton of a brain goes “𝘔𝘐𝘚𝘛𝘌𝘙 𝘋𝘈𝘙𝘊𝘠 😍😍😍” and any speck of common sense I possess gets tossed right out of the nearest window.

With that said, the pacing of this film was reminiscent of any video I have seen of a newborn giraffe attempting to stand: It wombles (with confidence) and forgets the importance of learning to walk before you can run. Christine’s condition (an inability to form new memories) is reaffirmed and made conceptually possible through the use of various storytelling elements - in example, repetitive sequencing that suggests an overarching lapse in memory - but unintentionally trips over itself in ways that distances audience members from this primary source of contention. For one, it is harder over time to discern how much of the truths revealed to Christine are spurred on by measures taken to investigate on her own behalf versus those that feel intuitive or aggressively random. Secondly, the transition between emotions in which dialogue is the driving force is carelessly accelerated and often doesn’t reflect interactions that feel natural or seamless.

Probably not much of a surprise at all given the inspiration for this novel, but much of the source material is changed as a result of an inevitable time constraint. Some of these changes are harmless and ultimately have little bearing on the entirety of the plot. On the other, many changes between the book and movie facilitate the elements of this film that make it an easy target for cynicism and heavy-handed dismissal. Watson’s novel makes a more meaningful effort to explore Christine’s struggle with remembering the past, and is contrasted by this film's laser focus on the present as her most immediate and present point of concern. Because of this, the helplessness felt by her character (that is meant to resonate with viewers) translates poorly on screen and subsequently creates even more space between the emotions portrayed by the characters and those the audience is expected to.

Without going into much detail that would be considered spoilers the book ends on a point that is intentionally obscure and appropriately encompasses the amount of mystery that defines the plot as a cohesive unit. The author of ‘Before I Go To Sleep’ has spoken out in approval for this change - but mentions this as being the direct result of my aforementioned time restraint. It is only in hindsight that I can theoretically complain about these changes, but my point still ultimately stands tall: Joffé’s intentions and the conclusion of this film fail to meet with grace and instead forcibly crash upon impact.

‘Before I Go To Sleep’ speaks to subject matter that can be naturally engaging, but makes few attempts in conjuring what would be the bare minimum of effort needed to enjoy this film; furthermore, I would be hard-pressed to consider this worth watching more than once and it is nearly impossible to eagerly recommend.

TL DR: Between a professor-who-shall-not-be-named setting the bar for men ridiculously low and Christopher Nolan setting the bar for plots revolving around amnesia ridiculously high watching this was a reluctantly pleasant experience that I will gladly and enthusiastically leave in my rear-view mirror.
Good going my guys.
Good freaking going. 🤜🤛
6 people found this helpful
Geoffrey F. ArnoldReviewed in the United States on July 18, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
A great find.
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This is a story that has to be allowed to unfold at the pace it unfolds.

What this means is this: while this film moves a bit slow for many tastes, the pacing is critical to the telling of the story. You know by the description that the woman has no memory of the previous day(s) of her life. She has to "start all over" every morning. Think "50 First Dates" without the laughs.

Clues are given, but not too overtly, as the story unfolds. It is very well paced, and very well acted by all parties involved. The cast is small, and almost claustrophobic. But that actually adds to the dilemma the woman is going through, and gives us a sense of what she has to deal with psychologically.

The dialogue is very well written, and the language is kept clean most of the time, a great plus in our book.

My wife doesn't like slow moving films usually, but this film is one of those exceptions where she was drawn in and understood the pacing was necessary. And because we knew clues would be doled out as we go...who is telling her the truth, who is lying to her?...this became an important aspect of the whole film because they were very clever in keeping you wondering until they simply HAD to tip the scale to now reveal just who was not honest....and, oh, what a wonderful twist - we didn't see it at all. And then it really started to come together in a wonderful way.

They didn't botch the end at all, not even a little. It was a very satisfying ending.

And we didn't spoil anything at all in helping you understand why this film works so well.
3 people found this helpful
KafkaReviewed in the United States on May 16, 2021
1.0 out of 5 stars
Dreadfully Boring
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Absolutely painful to watch, from one minute to the next. Just an endless drip, drip, drip, drip of clues, leading nowhere interesting. Also, why is Nicole Kidman whispering through the whole film? I can't imagine being stuck in a dark theater watching this. Giving up with 35 minutes to go. At this point I don't care how it ends.
7 people found this helpful
anonymousReviewed in the United States on November 14, 2021
1.0 out of 5 stars
Watching paint is more exciting
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I suggest you use your time more effectively and go to sleep instead of watching this. It is unbelievably slow, and for no good reason. There is no effect to the deliberateness. If you're interested in seeing close ups of Nicole's fillers and botox, watch away.
5 people found this helpful
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