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When a film opens with shots of a straight and anonymous American highway — that most overdetermined of American film locations — as Sleepwalking does, one must be braced for a story about emotional journeys. A ribbon of asphalt stretching to the horizon is immediate shorthand for personal growth along the road of life (for, to paraphrase Tom Cochrane, life is a highway); this is as true for Captain America and Billy as it is for Steve Martin and the late John Candy. Though Sleepwalking offers little variation on the modern automotive odyssey to maturity (as its protagonists carpool their way to catharsis and fulfillment, sensitive pop songs play in the background and the camera’s lens flares with orange sunsets), its earnestness and acting at least provide the momentum necessary to avoid stalling, whether or not the viewer is content to ride along.

Click here to read Leo Goldsmith’s review of Sleepwalking.

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