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The Sleepwalker
    2013, 92 minutes, color, Norway/U.S.A., U.S. Dramatic
    Kaia enjoys a quiet life with her boyfriend, Andrew, on her late father’s secluded, 1920s, Le Corbusier–style estate, isolated from the rest of her rural Massachusetts town. Their restoration of the elaborate, but gutted, home is interrupted by the middle-of-the-night arrival of Kaia’s sister, Christine, followed the next morning by Christine’s WASPish fiancé, Ira. Immediate friction develops among the quartet as Christine announces her pregnancy, questions Kaia’s relationship with Andrew, and objects to the relics of her and Kaia’s shared childhood being discarded.

    In her feature debut, director Mona Fastvold visually and aurally creates a destabilizing atmosphere, lulling us into the unraveling sisters’ fractured experience of the world. The art direction enhances this dreamy, but unsettling, mood, juxtaposing the sharp exterior angles and the interior decay of the house with its idyllic wooded surroundings. A study in contrasts between Christine’s raging brokenness and Kaia’s repression, Ira’s mild-mannered propriety and Andrew’s bitter blue-collar machismo, The Sleepwalker weaves these compounding clashes into a powerful portrait of the battle to separate the young women’s personal fictions from realities. - H.Z.

    About the Director

    Mona Fastvold is a 32-year-old Paris- and Oslo-based director and writer. Her previous credits include a wide variety of well-regarded music videos. In 2012, Fastvold received a prestigious grant from the Norwegian Film Institute for her directorial debut, The Sleepwalker, which was cowritten with Brady Corbet. The two of them are next set to shoot Corbet’s directorial debut, The Childhood of a Leader, starring Juliette Binoche, which they also wrote together.

    Cast and Credits

    Director: Mona Fastvold

    Screenwriters: Mona Fastvold, Brady Corbet

    Producers: Karin Julsrud, Turid Øversveen

    Coproducers: Schuyler Weiss, Julie Christeas

    Cinematographer: Zachary Galler

    Production Designer: Lucio Seixas

    Editors: Jon Endre Mørk, Michael Mazzotta

    Composers: Sondre Lerche, Kato Ådland

    Principal Cast: Gitte Witt, Christopher Abbott, Brady Corbet, Stephanie Ellis

    Contact: Stine Oppegaard / Norwegian Film Institute / stine.oppegaard@nfi.no