Repeat Watch: While You Were Sleeping
While You Were Sleeping is a romantic comedy directed by Jon Turteltaub and written by Daniel G. Sulliven and Fredric Lebow. The 1995 film stars Sandra Bullock as Lucy Moderatz, a lonely token collector for the Chicago Transit Authority. The comedy also stars Bill Pullman, Peter Gallagher, Peter Boyle, and Jack Warden. With only a seventeen million dollar budget, it became a tremendous success making $182 million worldwide. It also somehow has moved into the realm of one of my favorite holiday movies since it just happens to take place during the Christmas season.
So, why is this 1995 rom com worth a repeat watch?
1) This Cast
I realize I might be a little biased here, but this movie has an amazing cast. Sandra Bullock is fantastic in this; she is able to tap into the loneliness felt by Lucy, but she also shows off her comedic chops in this movie. Somehow, though, it’s all the members of the Callaghan family that makes this movie one of the best. Most of those actors are gone now, but Peter Boyle is amazing as the dry humored patriarch. Micole Mercurio as Midge is perfect as the overwhelming, emotional matriarch of the family. Glynis Johns as Elsie might be the best character of all with all of her one-liners, and Jack Warden as Saul portrays the perfect quirky somewhat wise family friend.
2) The Family Dynamics
The Callaghan family in this movie is unlike any other, and I can remember watching this as a kid thinking that I wanted my family to be just like that. They are loud; they talk over one another. They’re incredibly funny, and I love all of the quippy retorts that accompany this family. However, nothing can beat the scene at the dinner table. There is not a holiday meal where we don’t feel a need to say how “these mashed potatoes are so creamy” and “John Wayne was tall.” Every person brings something to the table, and it makes this overbearing, exuberant family a group to fall in love with throughout the course of the story.
3) It’s What Rom Coms Should Be
I think it’s fair to say that we have all seen some terrible romantic comedies, and there’s a reason why a lot of people make fun of the entire genre. It does get predictable, and many of these circumstances are outlandish or silly. Somehow, though, While You Were Sleeping moves beyond all of that. Is it a normal thing to jump onto a train track to save someone or be mistaken as someone’s fiancé? No, of course not. However, this story crafts those circumstances together perfectly and makes the ridiculous incredibly enjoyable to watch. The movie also takes Lucy on a journey that truly changes her, and every good romantic comedy should accomplish just that.
So, I think this is a film that everyone should revisit during the week between Christmas and New Years because that is the actual timing of the film. However, it really is just a cute movie with some cheesy 90’s moments sprinkled in between. It contains a great performance from Sandra Bullock, and it will consistently keep you laughing. So, even if you don’t own the movie, it’s currently streaming on Netflix. So, do yourself a favor in the last days of the holiday season and give While You Were Sleeping another watch.
Mollie is a film enthusiast, aspiring writer/screenwriter, and a lover of all things Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Doctor Who. She is the co-founder of The Digital Shore (@thedigitalshore) and Above The Line (@atl_movies). You can follow her many adventures through Twitter and Instagram at @mcbeach.