While You Were Sleeping (1995) - Review

by - January 03, 2019

Synopsis: A love story built on a misunderstanding. A transit worker pulls commuter Peter off the tracks after he’s mugged. But while he’s in a coma, his family mistakenly thinks she’s Peter’s fiancée, and she doesn’t correct them. Things get more complicated when she falls for his brother, who’s not quite sure that she’s who she claims to be.

A Story About Love At Second Sight

After Lucy (Sandra Bullock), a lonely transit worker, saves her longtime crush Peter (Peter Gallagher) from the path of an oncoming train, she finds herself unexpectedly in the role of his fiance due to a misunderstanding at the hospital. With Peter in a coma, his family embraces Lucy as one of their own after she finds she can't tell them the truth. Complications arise when she meets Jack (Bill Pullman), Peter's brother, and finds herself falling for him.

This has been one of my favorite romantic comedies since it was released in theaters in 1995. Sandra Bullock slipped seamlessly into the role first offered to Julia Roberts and the film catapulted her to stardom. While the premise itself was a bit improbable, the cast (specifically Bullock) and Jon Turteltaub's direction somehow manages to make it work.

Lucy is not your typical rom-com beauty queen (nor does she have to undergo some magical transformation from drab to fab in order to win her man) and she never has to change who she is in order for Jack, or Peter for that matter, to fall in love with her. She's awkward, kind and relatable on every level while Jack and Peter could not be more different, Peter being a wealthy, self-absorbed attorney and Jack a blue-collar boy next door who likes to build furniture.

Jack and Lucy's chemistry is really what makes this movie work. There aren't many rom-com tropes here. They're not bitter enemies fighting attraction. They're not forced together in contrived situations. Their interactions are natural despite the unusual circumstances and even once you realize they've fallen in love over the course of what is essentially a week, you still believe it. What more could you want from a rom-com?

I still love this movie and it remains in my top 5 romantic comedies of all time.

Starring: Sandra Bullock, Bill Pullman, Peter Gallagher, Peter Boyle, Jack Warden, Glynis Johns, Monica Keena
Directed by: Jon Turteltaub
Rated: PG
Watched: 10.10.2018
Fun Facts:
- The role of Lucy was written for Demi Moore.
- The film's working title was 'Coma Guy'.
- In the transition scene where the paperboy flips his bike and falls, this was unscripted and the boy actually broke his wrist.
Notable Song: Wherever I Would Be by Dusty Springfield and Daryl Hall

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