Sleeping Dogs (18)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner14/03/2007

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 89 mins

Despite its vomit-inducing revelation, this is a surprisingly sweet romcom with a strong comic performance by Hamilton and some thought-provoking things to say about relationships.

What's it all about?
Directed by Bobcat Goldthwait (from the Police Academy movies), Sleeping Dogs stars Melinda Page Hamilton as Amy, a young woman with a sordid secret in her past. When her golden boy fiance John (Bryce Johnson) suggests that they tell each other their darkest secrets, Amy reluctantly complies, only to have John recoil in disgust.

Amy seeks refuge with her parents (Geoff Pierson and Bonita Friedericy), but things go from bad to worse when her jealous, drug-addict brother (Jack Plotnick) reveals her secret, ostracising Amy from her family. She finds comfort in a relationship with her married co-worker, Ed (Colby French) but when he asks about her past she wonders whether full disclosure is really such a good idea.

The Good
Given Goldthwait's background and the vomit-inducing nature of Amy's secret (revealed in the opening scene), you could be forgiven for expecting a tasteless gross-out comedy, so it's something of a pleasant surprise when Sleeping Dogs turns out to be a genuinely sweet romantic comedy. Similarly, Goldthwait's sharply observed script has more to say about contemporary relationships than any number of standard Hollywood romcoms.

Melinda Page Hamilton (the psycho nun in Desperate Housewives) is terrific in the lead, combining superb comic timing with a disarming sweetness – here's hoping she lands some bigger parts after this. There's also strong support from French and from Friedericy, whose own surprise revelation is just one of the script's many highlights.

The Great
There are several hilarious gags, both verbal and visual, and the plot is sure to provide plenty of post-film pub discussion on the importance (or otherwise) of honesty in relationships.

Worth seeing?
In short, this is a genuinely sweet, frequently hilarious romantic comedy with a superb script and an excellent comic performance from Melinda Page Hamilton. Highly recommended.

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Sleeping Dogs (18)
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Content updated: 21/10/2017 00:26

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