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In wondering if you’re excited to see the latest from THE NAMELESS helmer and [REC] co-director Jaume Balaguero—first of all, you shouldn’t be wondering—ask yourself if you’d like to experience the absolute height of shuddering. In his classically suspenseful tale of stalkerdom, SLEEP TIGHT (opening theatrically today), Balaguero and his obsessive lead will make you feel absolutely nothing less than gross; in a totally good way, mind you.
Possibly Balaguero’s best solo outing yet, SLEEP TIGHT simply gets so much right. In terms of story, it refuses to over explain, opening the film with Cesar already in the throes of his obsession, and only hints at his past exploits as well, never bringing about the cliché of a previous victim. Cesar himself is an anomaly, seemingly taking these actions out of hate, much more so than a terrifying love. More than once, he utters some semblance of a terrible phrase like, “I’m going to wipe the smile off that bitch’s face,” and Tosar, incredible in the role, sells every ounce of sheer malevolence in his body.
The director is positively elegant and old-fashioned in his style, expertly relaying frightening information and orchestrating fist-clenching set pieces throughout. It’s interesting to view this side-by-side with something like [REC], both in admiration of the success in opposite tones and style, but also in wondering what exactly is drawing Balaguero to these apartment settings. If he’s looking to leave us distrusting our neighbors and the strangers we share space with, it’s hard to say he isn’t victorious, especially with his gut-puncher of an ending
The less privy one is to the proceedings of SLEEP TIGHT, the better, so I’ll suffice to say that once this hits your shores, see it and then immediately check under your bed.
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