It follows Alex Gardiner (Quaid) who is a psychic but uses his power to win horse races. He has been ‘voluntold’ –forced to participate in a government funded project exploring the use of psychics to enter a person’s dream. The purpose is to assist the sleeper with hidden personal issues. Heading the project is his old friend and mentor Dr. Paul Novotny (von Sydow) and his assistant Jane DeVries (Capshaw). Alex soon realizes that the program is being steered in a sinister direction by Bob Blair (Plummer) a sort of hyper government military official. It’s now up to Alex and Jane to uncover the plot of dream manipulation and stop the nightmarish assassination of the President.
I think I’ll leave it at that. You will have to watch to find out how everything pans out. I suppose you could say the film is like “Inception” (2010) meets ‘Freddy Kruger’ from “Nightmare on Elm Street” (1984). How is that for a hook?
The acting was acceptable from Dennis Quaid –not a fan of his stuff though. Max von Sydow is fantastic as always and the world renowned Christopher Plummer is simply enchanting. Also starring is Kate Capshaw whose performance was okay but I should say at least she didn’t ruin the picture this time. (Like the time she did with Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom). The effects were not bad, it was a low budget but they were able to achieve the feeling with the very little available. Some impressive stop motion effects in a dream sequence and good use of lighting to let the viewer know it was a dream sequence.
The story definitely deserves an “A” for effort but I felt that the story itself could have been expanded. This movie was made in the early 80’s and it shows; everything from clothing, cars to the fear of nuclear war which was the hidden agenda. It was decent for what it was. I do recommend seeing and rate it 7/10.