Box art for Insomnia


drama, thrillers

Crime never sleeps. Neither does Will Dormer, a veteran LAPD homicide detective sent north to Alaska to head a murder case.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Positive role models
2 out of 5
3 out of 5
5 out of 5

Well-made but grisly thriller is not for kids.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie has brief but grisly violence, a nude corpse, some creepy sound effects, and some very strong language. There are tense scenes and characters are shot and killed. Characters drink and smoke.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the moral compromises Dormer makes and the ways in which people have to balance the ends and the means. What will Ellie do next? Why? Why is the town named "Nightmute?" What do you think about the girl who was killed?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 20
    see all Insomnia reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: Here's proof that it's still possible to make pop-oriented yet personal movies with an A-list cast and a zillion bucks.

- Andrew O'Hehir,, Friday, May 24, 2002

Fresh: A dark and fidgety picture from Christopher Nolan, who made such a splash with Memento.

- Anthony Lane, New Yorker, Monday, August 5, 2013

Fresh: Scene by scene, screenwriter Hillary Seitz follows director Erik Skjoldbjaerg's original closely, but this remake deepens and improves upon the Norwegian film by giving Dormer a more complex relationship with Eckhart.

- David Ansen, Newsweek, Monday, August 5, 2013

Audience Reviews

4 stars

Christopher Nolan's second effort is a solid Thriller starring an excellent cast. Insomnia is a terrific film that is very well made. Nolan keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout the film and manages to keep the thrills coming. The talent involved here delivers some strong performances. The actors that are most notable being Al Pacino, Robin Williams and Hilary Swank. There's enough going on screen to keep you on the edge of your seat to the very end. Insomnia is a solid, well crafted Thriller that shouldn't be overlooked. Maybe because of Nolan's recent works such as Inception and The Dark Knight has this film been slightly overshadowed. This is a solid second film from Christopher Nolan who's definitely made a big name for himself since. Insomnia boasts a good performance by Robin Williams, which equals the one in One Hour Photo. Insomnia is a solid, pulse pounding Thriller, and it definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat to the very end. I think the cast make this film better than it actually is, and each one delivers something terrific to the screen. Insomnia is a phenomenal second feature from Christopher Nolan, and glimpses of his ever growing creativity are apparent on screen. The result is an accomplished Thriller that is superbly acted and directed.

- TheDudeLebowski65, Friday, August 5, 2011

3 stars

Can't remember if I saw this in the movies when it first came out or if I watched it at home and forgot to write it up. But after watching a second time hard to imagine it was produced 10 years ago. Al Pacino plays awesome part as he always does as a cop. He's in Alaska working on a case when he kills his partner. The case is a teen age girl was murdered and Robin Williams is the killer he's tracking down as the movie mazes about, excellent twist here and there. Williams always seems to play a excellent Psycho. 4 stars for this one 2-27-13

- bbcfloridabound, Thursday, February 28, 2013