Macabre…ish Horror Review: Before I Wake



Before I Wake aka Somnia, 2017/ 1 hr 37 min



Parents, Mark (Thomas Jane) and Jessie (Kate Bosworth), who are still mourning and traumatized by the loss a child, foster another, a boy named Cody (Jacob Tremblay).


He is very polite and very well behaved, highly regimented for a child. He arrives with a box no one is allowed to touch but him. Cody confesses that a creature comes while he sleeps and eats people, he’s called The Canker Man (Topher Bousquet).


One evening, while watching tv, the room fills with butterflies, then they all disappear but something else appears in their place. Always just out of view, lurking at out of the corner of your eye and in the shadows.


Jessie tries to resolve this experience and understand it with the help of therapy. But every night the butterflies return but one night, their son, Sean (Antonio Evan Romero), appears but he disappears the minute Cody wakes up and so do the butterflies.


Cody tries to give up sleep so The Canker Man doesn’t come but he can only go without sleep for so long. A nap at school and the monster appears and eats a bully. And then he gets sleeping pills and it gets a lot worse.


Jessie decides to find out everything she can about Cody and hopefully the origin of  his unique ability and The Canker Man. Maybe she can stop it or bring those lost to Canker Man back.


By the time the truth is revealed, it is much sadder and amazing than expected. It’s a reminder that the truth through a child’s mind and memory, is not the truth of an adult.



This was an unexpectedly good movie! The pacing and story was good, the tension and effects worked well together. It was eerie, sad and engaging. Expect jump scares but not blood and gore. Well done!