A young painter shifts between the real world and the world in her dream in Marcelo Mayen’s short film, The Sleeping Life of Sofia. Sofia (Ana Coto) is an artist who paints what she dreams. Like her paintings, the details of her dreams are so vivid they feel real. These lucid dreams are a defense mechanism against her depression.
“These lucid dreams are a defense mechanism against her depression.”
At this time, Sofia’s depression stems from being alone and is compounded by the fact that she’s about to turn 30 and is still single. Her shame only intensifies in her dreams, to the point that Sofia withdraws and shelters in her apartment. Finally, her depression has gotten to the point that it prompts a visit from her brother, Pablo (Laris Macario).
The Sleeping Life of Sofia brings to light the complexities of depression and sets it against the vibrant colors of visuals of the art world. It’s this contrast between the colorful and vivid world of painting set against the paralyzing backdrop of depression that makes the film work as much as it does. Through Sofia’s dreams, we feel her pain, which leads to her self-imposed isolation, which symbolizes that battle that wages in our minds. Writer/director Mayen wonderfully uses a series of compelling images to make his point.
"…wonderfully uses a series of compelling images to make his point."