Insomnia

User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 420 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 14 out of 420

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User Reviews

  1. marshallm.
    Oct 19, 2005
    6
    It was ok, not as good as his other movies tho.
  2. NateM.
    Jun 22, 2002
    6
    This movie took a whole grouping of talent (minus Hillary Swank) and applied it to a poorly-written story. The characters were all too stereotypical, Williams was unable to apply a convincing role as a accidental murderer, Al Pacino was good, cinematography was very nice. Nolan needs to write his own scripts.
  3. PatC.
    Jan 7, 2004
    6
    It's contrived but totally immersing. Insomnia now joins jet-lag as the 2 most believable devices for dumbing down characters.
  4. PaulaW.
    May 27, 2002
    6
    Pretty standard Hollywood remake of a foreign flick: better-looking, with slicker editing and louder soundtrack, but hampered by truly vile dialogue and a sanitized version of the protagonist's moral conflict. The actors do their best with their horrid clunky lines, sometimes rising above the material (Pacino), sometimes sunk by it (Hilary Swank). Which makes me wonder: just how much Pretty standard Hollywood remake of a foreign flick: better-looking, with slicker editing and louder soundtrack, but hampered by truly vile dialogue and a sanitized version of the protagonist's moral conflict. The actors do their best with their horrid clunky lines, sometimes rising above the material (Pacino), sometimes sunk by it (Hilary Swank). Which makes me wonder: just how much would it cost, in the scheme of things, to hire a struggling English major to patch up a script? Robin Williams, in his much-hyped return from the abysmal roles he has chosen for the past decade or so, is still Robin Williams: he brings the same lovable-pixie quality to the unstable-murderer character as he does to all his other roles. In the chilling original, the brilliant Stellan Skarsgard plays a star detective in full moral decay, tormented by his own misdeeds, who may or may not ever pay a price. Pacino's character, on the other hand, has reasons for anything he may have done wrong, and we never fail to believe that he is a Good Guy. The one good thing about the adaptation is the absence of the sexual-repression plot from the original, in which Skarsgard's character chases all sorts of inappropriate fleshly gratification - that never would have worked in an American setting. But we still can't help wishing for a little more controversy, a little more philosophical meat on these herring bones of plot, actors, and setting. Expand
  5. ArnoldP.
    May 24, 2002
    5
    Here is a taught, intelligent, well crafted, beautifully photographed, contrived, but riveting thriller, #10 material on the metascore, but (for me) had fatal flaws. Pacino, though subdued, made me fell uncomfortable, wrestling with his morality, and his annoying insomnia. All those closeups heightened my being annoyed. Williams was miscast; his head was in his role, technically he Here is a taught, intelligent, well crafted, beautifully photographed, contrived, but riveting thriller, #10 material on the metascore, but (for me) had fatal flaws. Pacino, though subdued, made me fell uncomfortable, wrestling with his morality, and his annoying insomnia. All those closeups heightened my being annoyed. Williams was miscast; his head was in his role, technically he scored, but he did not show he had the heart of a killer, the result, just not credible. Hillary Swank, the moral center of the film, was a breath of fresh air, just beautiful to watch, a fine actress. I walked out of the film feeling empty. Expand
  6. Aug 21, 2013
    4
    Even though Nolan has several good approaches, Insomnia is nothing more than generic, unspectacular, and forgettable in the long run. Hillary Seitz’s adapted screenplay is laden with crime show stereotypes and gratuitous dialogue but lacks real character development or any unique elements. The best example for this is Hilary Swank who obviously has the most unfavourable role as an aspiringEven though Nolan has several good approaches, Insomnia is nothing more than generic, unspectacular, and forgettable in the long run. Hillary Seitz’s adapted screenplay is laden with crime show stereotypes and gratuitous dialogue but lacks real character development or any unique elements. The best example for this is Hilary Swank who obviously has the most unfavourable role as an aspiring assistant detective that wants nothing more than to get advise from the old-established cop. Due to all of that, remarkable achievements in terms of visuals can’t help the film anymore than Pacino’s dedicated acting and Insomnia is best watched on a weekday evening while eating lunch and conversing with your partner. Expand
  7. Nov 12, 2013
    6
    Insomnia will keep you awake.
    Al Pacino stars in the mystery thriller that entertains but fails to reach a conclusion. A very well directed idea with a sub-par ending that doesn't allow it to reach its potential.
  8. Nov 7, 2014
    6
    Like the title, Insomnia will keep you awake and tuned in because of the directing but an incomplete and sub par ending make you wish you didn't have to focus so hard the entire film.
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. 100
    A rare case of an American remake that actually improves on a European movie.
  2. Nolan creates an effective thriller, although he keeps his stylistic pyrotechnics to a minimum.
  3. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    100
    A perfect fit between filmmaker (Memento's Christopher Nolan) and material (Norway's same-name psycho-chiller from 1997), this remake gets all there is to get out of a peculiar premise with promise.