To Sleep so as to Dream is the first film by Japanese director Kaizo Hayashi and it’s a knockout. Sometime in the late 50’s, an ageing actress from the silent film era hires a detective to rescue her kidnapped daughter. What she is really searching for is her lost youth and the unknown outcome of her first film, `Eternal Mystery’. It was never completed because of a puritanical backlash against women playing women’s roles. Moving back and forth between the 20’s and 50’s, from silent to sound, this is one of the most original films in years: a detective story with a really satisfying ending.
Black and White