Written and directed by Joseph Ciminera, Somnium follows two twin sisters Blaire and Grace (played by Gianna and Alexa Ciminera) who live with their Grandfather. As the film opens the twins appear to have some power over dreams and imagination as various characters are disturbed by having the twins in their presence.
As they are babysat by a woman named Mary (Denise Haines) they fall asleep. When their Grandfather returns he is angry that Mary let them sleep and rushes to wake them up. In the meantime Mary experiences a scary deja-vu moment.
Later the girls (in a scary voice) ask Grandfather to not sedate them as they sleep but he continues; then as they sleep three burglars break into a house to find jewels and money. The beat up Grandfather and search the house. Sonn they discover they discover the twins who awaken and decalre the punishment for what the burglars have done will be “biblical!”
But is that all that is going on in the house? And is that that all that is going on in the burglars minds?
Somnium contains some nice ideas and concepts and is filmed adequately (including some excellent panning shots that help emphasis the size of the house) and at times comes across as a lower budget American Horror Story. It is let down though by the vastly differing levels of acting ability of the cast involved. That being said director Joseph Ciminera makes sure he gets the most out of every penny of his budget (especially in the soundtrack department) and every member of his staff in front and behind the camera.
Verdict: 6/10. Is it well polished, no it is not. The editing process leaves some disjointed moments you will pick up on but it is made with a clear vision that director Joseph Ciminera has worked hard to transfer from his page to the screen and his underlying themes are definitely not lost in translation. This dedication to completing your own vision must be complimented especially as on a deeper level Somnium’s exploration of self expectation and disappointment is inside each character – layered in a dreamy maze that only the twins know the way in or out of!