‘To Sleep, to Dream’: Can we imagine a movie with only sound?

A unique theatrical experience in the form of EarFilm’s To Sleep, To Dream took place yesterday at Lincoln’s Drill Hall. The show was part of this year’s Frequency Festival.

In terms of the plot. the film is about a world in which dreaming is illegal and revolves around a man named Jack. Whilst I won’t give the story away (no spoilers – it’s something that you should experience yourself so I’d hate to ruin it!), I will talk about thoughts I had during the show as well as what I imagined…

So, the show itself combined narration from the story’s creator (Daniel Marcus Clark) alongside sound effects and audio from actors. Whilst this audio was clear, I personally struggled to hear Clark’s narration.

Despite feeling a bit lost throughout  the film, the sound effects and voices helped me to keep up with the plot. Some sections in particular were particularly strong in terms of my imagination – which was rather humorous and intriguing.

In my interpretation of the story, I found that my imagination came up with both unique descriptions for characters as well as using famous actors. For example, for the character of Jack, his appearance shifted from a large, bald man to a brown-haired and bearded man, then finally – and rathe bizarrely – Liam Neeson.

But at the same time, there were descriptions which were completely unique. Scenes of waves were completely original, so that was interesting for someone who wants to be a writer and needs to have an original imagination!

On a final, the ability to dream a film purely from audio can happen. By having a blindfold on, my mind was tricked into being awake but dreaming at the same time (somewhat like lucid dreaming). Also, in the Q&A in the end, it was interesting to see from fellow audience members – and in the exhibition – what other people imagined.

This is what makes EarFilms such an excellent concept. The film explores the beauty of imagination, and how this can differ from person to person.

To Sleep, To Dream is a thought-provoking show which I would thoroughly recommend.

Rating: 4 out of 5



2 thoughts on “‘To Sleep, to Dream’: Can we imagine a movie with only sound?

  1. This sounds so interesting. Even though I have a very wide imagination it´s not the most vivid one. I can only rarely see scenes out of books in my head. So this would have been something like a audiobook for me. I think the whole concept is very interesting because it leaves you to your own interpretation of things.
    xx Lisa | Following Lisa

    Liked by 1 person

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