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Come True – A Fun Exploration of Dreams, Nightmares, and Science

September 7, 2021

Quick Thoughts: – Grade B+ –  Director/writer/composer/cinematographer Anthony Scott Burns has created a visually impressive and creative film that will linger in your memory

Shot over 60 days, with a crew of five, Come True feels like a wildly intimate exploration of dreams, nightmares and science. Director Anthony Scott Burns drew inspiration from when he was eight years old, and processing the loss of his mom.  At night, he would see a shadow at the foot of his bed, and that memory is the catalyst for Come True. He also drew influences from sleep studies at Berkeley that showcased revolutionary technology that could draw rudimentary images of what people were dreaming about, and his own bouts with sleep paralysis, to create an original and haunting horror film. 

Come True focuses on a young woman named Sarah (Julia Sarah Stone – really good), who takes part in a sleep study that offers $12 an hour, and a full night of sleep. When we first meet Sarah she is sleeping on a playground slide, and stays awake through a combination of coffee, short naps, and lots of bicycle riding. She only goes inside her home to grab clothes/supplies, when her mom leaves the house, which means they’ve had a breakdown (which isn’t detailed in the movie) that keeps Sarah away from the house. At first, the sleep study offers her a chance to make some cash and get some sleep. However, when things start getting weird, she becomes skeptical of the mystery surrounding the study, and the people involved, who seem to be following her. 

To give away more about the plot would be a disservice, as Come True should be watched without  knowledge about the plot. There are a lot of surprises, twists, and neat revelations that shouldn’t be spoiled. Just know that Julia Sarah Stone is solid as the sleep-deprived high schooler who gets in over her head, and Landon Liboiron does a fine job playing a mysterious researcher who is either a creeper, or just a likable weirdo. The plot reminded me a lot of the excellent 2020 film The Vast of Night, which was shot on a budget, and featured a plot that centered around two teenagers unraveling a mystery. The two movies are widely different, but they seem kindred spirits in the way they play out their mysteries. There is something refreshing about how they leave you with asking questions, and wanting to go back and explore all the intricacies and moments. The 5.9 IMDb rating suggests some viewers might not appreciate all the questions and lack of clarity, but, if you go in with an open mind, and don’t need everything spelled out for you, it will be a rewarding watch.

Final ThoughtsCome True is a wildly inventive film that you should check out. I can’t wait to see what Scott Burns does next.

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