Sleep 2023


Directed by Jason Yu Nocturnal

A young wife faces a nightmarish scenario when her husband suddenly starts behaving strangely in his sleep. Does he have a sleeping disorder or is something more sinister afoot? Jason Yu’s whip-smart debut will keep you guessing.

Aug 11

The Civic

South Korea In Korean with English subtitles
95 minutes Colour / DCP
NZ Classification TBC

Director, Screenplay


Lewis Tae-wan Kim


Kim Tae-soo


Han Mee-yeon

Production Designer

Shin Yu-jin


Chang Hyuk-jin, Chang Yong-jin


Jung Yu-mi, Lee Sun-kyun


Cannes (Critics’ Week), Toronto 2023


Newlyweds Soo-jin (Jung Yu-mi) and Hyeon-soo (Parasite’s Lee Sun-kyun in one of his final roles) have a seemingly idyllic life – a new apartment, the cutest doggo, and a baby on the way. But when night falls, strange things start to happen when Hyeon-soo sleeps. At first, sleep-talking: he ominously declares “Someone’s inside”, but is it just a line from the TV series he’s acting in? When he starts sleepwalking and becomes a danger to himself and those around him, Soo-jin gets more concerned. Doctors diagnose a sleep disorder, but could there be something more sinister going on? 

Having worked with such maestros of Korean cinema as Lee Chang-dong and Bong Joon-ho, first-time director Jason Yu delivers a tightly paced piece of genre filmmaking from the get-go. What is basically a two-hander on a single set is cleverly divided into three increasingly wild chapters and as the stakes continue to raise, there’s no danger of dozing off. This diabolical debut will keep you on the edge of your seat. — Michael McDonnell

“Easily one of the best (and most fun) thrillers of the year… Jason Yu crafts a twisty delight that leaves you doubting what you’re seeing and wondering what to believe right till the last moment.” — Alissa Wilkinson, Vox

“Is Sleep a tale of post-partum paranoia or possession? Yu playfully calibrates his tones, using the claustrophobic space of the apartment to great advantage. By the time the film reaches its fevered finale, we feel just as trapped and uncertain as Soo-jin, struggling with what we even want to happen next… If this is just Jason Yu’s warm-up act, we could be talking about him in the same breath as Bong a decade from now. — Brian Tallerico,