(spoiler free)

Jamie Foxx stars in new crime action movie ‘Sleepless’ which is a remake of the French thriller, ‘Sleepless Night’. In recent years Foxx has focused on more mainstream roles in cinema. It hasn’t been since ‘Django Unchained’ back in 2012 that he’s had much success with his casting choices. As well as this remakes of foreign films have a habit of being of a lower quality than the original so could ‘Sleepless’ do anything to change this pattern?

‘Sleepless’ is set almost entirely in one location, a hotel/casino. I wonder if this is the reason that it managed to be consistently boring throughout. Then again it could possibly be down to the film just sort of starting. There’s little to no introduction to our characters before the main narrative kicks in. Whilst some might praise this rapid beginning I don’t. It meant that the action to follow wasn’t as dramatic as it could have been. In the heat of the moment the action sequences are decent, I enjoyed the several fist fights that feature. However these scenes do little to help the film as a whole. Furthermore the story is so painfully predictable that it removes all the potential suspense from the movie.

Another major issue I had with the film was that I just didn’t care about any of the characters. The most important relationship for the success of the story is that of Jamie Foxx and his on screen son. However coupled with the lack of any proper introduction and no development I just didn’t give a shit about them. Foxx puts in an odd performance, whispering his way through most of his lines. The nature of his character lends itself to a slightly mysterious performance but I just never found him convincing as the leading man here. The rest of the cast is made up of recognisable names including, Scoot McNairy, Dermot Mulroney, David Harbour, T.I. and Michelle Monaghan. They all fair better than Foxx but the writing lets them down. Monaghan comes across the best, easily being the most likeable character adding some comedy and some fun to the action. However, as a whole I can’t imagine any of this cast being remembered for their work here.

I haven’t seen the original ‘Sleepless Night’ but I struggle to think that it’s any worse than this remake. Therefore ‘Sleepless’ is yet another example of why Hollywood should simply leave foreign films alone. There is some fun to be had with the action sequences, the violence is at times brutal causing the audience to wince and there are a couple of chuckles thanks to some dialogue. Although all this can’t save the film from it’s own monotony, poor writing and un-engaging lead performer.  

Rating – 5/10

Question: What is your favourite Jamie Foxx film?
(Leave your answers in the comments section below!)

Thanks for reading this review and please let me know what you thought about the movie! Leave a comment below or drop me a tweet over at @HCMovieReviews.

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