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3.5 2
Director: William Maher

Cast: Nick Stahl, AnnaSophia Robb, Charlize Theron


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Charlize Theron, Woody Harrelson, Dennis Hopper, Nick Stahl, AnnaSophia Robb, and Deborra-Lee Furness star in a family drama detailing the efforts made by an 12-year-old girl to come to terms with her mother's abandonment. Tara's (Robb) mother, Joleen (Theron), just can't seem to get her life together.


Charlize Theron, Woody Harrelson, Dennis Hopper, Nick Stahl, AnnaSophia Robb, and Deborra-Lee Furness star in a family drama detailing the efforts made by an 12-year-old girl to come to terms with her mother's abandonment. Tara's (Robb) mother, Joleen (Theron), just can't seem to get her life together. Her boyfriend has recently been arrested for growing marijuana, and rather than attempting to create a stable living environment for her daughter, Joleen instead places Tara in foster care before vanishing without a trace. Joleen's brother, James (Stahl), isn't exactly the picture of equilibrium, yet he does feel sympathetic toward his niece and obligated to help her though such difficult times. After breaking Tara out of foster care, James and his newly freed niece set out on the open road together. Destination: nowhere. But every road has an end, and before long James and Tara find themselves at James and Joleen's father's farm. James has always avoided thinking about his violent childhood, though he realizes that in order to break the vicious cycle of dysfunction that the family has fallen into he must finally confront the demons of his past. Now, as Tara begins to understand why her missing mother has lived such a tumultuous life, James prepares for the confrontation that could bring his family closer together than ever before, if it doesn't destroy them first. William Maher, who served as visual effects supervisor for the 2005 Sundance film The Chumscrubber, makes his feature directorial debut with a film based on an original screenplay by that film's scribe, Zac Stanford.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Starz / Anchor Bay
Region Code:
[Wide Screen, Colorized]
Sales rank:

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Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Nick Stahl James
AnnaSophia Robb Tara
Charlize Theron Joleen
Deborra-Lee Furness Danni
Mathew St. Patrick Detective #1
Callum Keith Rennie Will
Woody Harrelson Randall
Dennis Hopper Mr. Reedy
Kenneth Mitchell Mr. Bergen
Jean Freeman Mrs. Bergen
Troy Skog Warren
George Grassick Cop #1
Mike Ennis Cop #2
Alexandra Fox Darlene
Lori Kennedy Foster Care Worker
R. James Anderson Road Crew Boss
Emily Wees Tara's Friend
Amy Matysio Sharon
Simon Chin Randall's Friend

Technical Credits
William Maher Director
Jim Brebner Asst. Director
Kirk Chiswell Cinematographer
Ross Dempster Production Designer
A.J. Dix Producer
Mark Dobrescu Camera Operator
Chris Duesterdiek Sound/Sound Designer
Kevin J. Edelman Musical Direction/Supervision
Donovan Fraser Cinematographer
Cynthia Greer Camera Operator
J.J. Harris Producer
Betia Hovedskov Casting
Beth Kono Producer
Stuart Levy Editor
Charlie Mason Executive Producer
Cathy McComb Costumes/Costume Designer
Brenda McCormick Casting
Sara McCudden Art Director
Rob Merilees Producer
Juan Carlos Montalvo Cinematographer
Justin Moore-Lewy Executive Producer
Stephen Onda Co-producer
Anthony Rhulen Executive Producer
Denis Roche Score Composer
Juan Ruiz-Anchia Cinematographer
Magalena Shenher Art Director
Bill Shively Executive Producer
Paki Smith Production Designer
Zac Stanford Screenwriter
Michael Stirling Executive Producer
Charlize Theron Producer
Dennis Virkler Editor
A. Diane Will Costumes/Costume Designer
Nicole Wiwchar Cinematographer
Christopher Young Score Composer

Scene Index

A Mother's Shame, a Family's Pain: the making of Sleepwalking; Trailer


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Sleepwalking 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
New director William Maher and writer Zac Stanford previously worked together in THE CHUMSCRUBBER and the similarity of vision is apparent in SLEEPWALKING: both films deal with the empty shells of hollow people aimlessly seeking connection in a world that has become foreign territory. It is a dark, cold, brooding film that somehow manages to maintain our attention with the hope that the gloomy tunnel though which the characters are passing will have a semblance of light at the end. Joleen (Charlize Theron) is the inadequate, loving-but- inconstant mother of twelve-year-old Tara (AnnaSophia Robb) whose reckless an aimless life leads to constant moving and lack of roots. Evicted form her latest residence Joleen and Tara move in with Joleen's younger brother James (Nick Stahl) whose similarly aimless life is defined by a trashy apartment and a mindless construction work job. Tara is sullen, disappointed in her mother's erratic, irresponsible behavior, and when Joleen once again takes off 'on a new idea', Tara is left with James - trying to figure out an existence for survival. James loses his job due to absenteeism, takes up residence in the filthy basement of his nerdy co-worker Randall (Woody Harelson), while the town cop (Mathew St. Patrick) reluctantly places Tara in a foster home to await the return of Joleen. Tara prefers life with James to her 'imprisonment' and the two take off on a road trip, seeking some degree of happiness and love in a world gone berserk. When James runs out of money, he heads to his old home farm for refuge, an unlikely endpoint as his and Joleen's childhood was warped by their abusive farmer father (Dennis Hopper). The return to the farm, James hopes, will provide connection to Tara's past, but instead it results in a tragedy that ultimately moves Tara back to her 'home' and to Joleen, while James drives off into the unknown future, finally awakened from his sleepwalking through life. The film is as bleak as the flat and snowy countryside (the film was shot in Canada's winter) and that countryside reflects the desperate loneliness of the characters. The small cast offers solid portrayals with the work of Nick Stahl being the standout performance. Theron, Robb, Harelson, Hopper, and Deborra-Lee Furness (in a small but poignant role) make the best of a shaky script. This is a mood piece and can become depressing if the viewer expects resolution of the sad and empty lives the characters lead. But there is a haunting quality to the look of the film that stays with the viewer, especially in the mystery in the eyes of the character James as he drives into an unknown but awakened future. Grady Harp
Anonymous More than 1 year ago