Tango music filled the Manship Theatre on Friday evening before the first Baton Rouge showing of “Sleepwalk with Me,” a film from NPR’s Ira Glass that is part of a series of independent films the Manship Theatre is bringing to Baton Rouge.
Glass, host of NPR program “This American Life,” and star of the movie, Mike Birbiglia, launched a campaign to get the movie into more theaters than “The Avengers.” In their first weekend, “Sleepwalk with Me” grossed more per screen than the blockbuster hit. “Sleepwalk with Me” showed on one screen. “The Avengers” showed on more than 4,000.
Glass appeared at the Union Theater last month to promote the film, as well as to talk about his radio experience, and how he likes to make stories come alive.
When Glass came onstage, the lights remained off for a few minutes as he spoke about the difference
between radio and movies, and how in movies, the audience gets to see the characters.
In an interview with The Chicago Tribune, Glass said this was one of the main differences between writing a script for radio and a screenplay for a movie.
The Baton Rouge audience had differing reactions to the movie.
Baton Rouge resident Jeff Carney said it accurately depicted sleepwalking, based on his own experience.
“It’s true to form,” Carney said.
Resident Andrea Galinsky agreed, saying the movie was emotionally true.
Galinsky said she felt Baton Rouge has been in an indie movie drought, and “Sleepwalk with Me” was a welcome change.
Baton Rouge resident Jennifer Carwile said she thought the movie moved a bit slowly, and she knew from the beginning how the relationship of the two main characters would end.
“I thought it was going to be funnier,” Carwile said.
“Sleepwalk with Me” will play for the last time at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Manship Theatre.
Film programmer for the theater Jason Langlois said the idea to show “Sleepwalk with Me” came in an email from WRKF, Baton Rouge’s NPR affiliate.
Langlois said the theater normally hosts live concerts and ballet performances, but is trying to get into the indie film scene. The Manship Theatre hosts one new film per month.
He stressed the idea that they accept suggestions.
“We can guess what people want to see, but sometimes we guess wrong.”
Langlois said people with movie ideas can post on the Manship Theatre’s Facebook page if they had any in mind.