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The Nightmare


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Editorial Reviews

Five percent of the world's population have had the experience of awaking paralyzed while a supernatural entity climbs onto their chest suffocating them, inducing a level of fear that is beyond imagination. These attacks have been known to erupt in epidemics, resulting in mass panic, post-traumatic stress disorder, and sudden unexplainable death. Even the baffled scientific community is divided between psychological and metaphysical explanations. In Roman times the entity was called The Succubus. In Russia it was known as The Vampyr. In Newfoundland it is called The Hag. The Vikings simply called it Night Mara, meaning "The crusher that comes in the night". Its face and name may change but it has always been with us... lurking in the shadows, waiting for us to fall asleep. Haunted by his own encounter with The Nightmare, documentary filmmaker Adam Gray sets out on a journey to understand this terrifying phenomenon. From the foggy shores of Newfoundland to the steaming jungles of Zanzibar we will see where the Nightmare has left its mark. Hear from those who have survived the experience, and the families of those that did not. Meet the scientists, psychologists, and folklorists on the front lines of the battle for understanding how something without material form can traumatize and even kill those that encounter it. The Nightmare is a fascinating exploration of a phenomenon that suggests that the only difference between hallucination and the supernatural... is belief.

This product is manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media. Amazon.com's standard return policy will apply.


Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Adam Gray, Martin Walsh, David Hufford, Allan Cheyne, Shelley Adler
  • Directors: Adam Gray, Andrew Gray
  • Writers: Adam Gray, Andrew Gray
  • Producers: Paul Stephens
  • Format: NTSC
  • Region: All Regions
  • Studio: Syndicado
  • DVD Release Date: January 5, 2010
  • Run Time: 45 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0032Z6X5G
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #362,534 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

I knew more about sleep paralysis prior to the movie than watching it.
C. Shisler
When we as people were less learned it was only natural to attribute this frightening experience as the result of a demonic presence.
lawrence chan
I fast-forwarded a few times hoping to get past the melodrama, but no luck.
Tracie K

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ryan Hurd on October 14, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I've suffered with sleep paralysis nightmares for some 20 odd years, and this documentary fully captures the "miasma of evil," as Thomas Pynchon might say, that pervades the sleep paralysis night-mare attack.

Great expert interviews with top scholars on this phenomena, as well as a personal look into the narrator's own struggles with the nightmare.

I didn't give it 5 stars simply because I feel the documentary skimped on the research that shows how sleep paralysis nightmares can be prevented, worked with, and even used as a jumping off to out-of-body experiences. This is a personal quibble simply because of my own work with SP and lucid dreaming.

Overall, worth renting, and if you are into spooky and real-life paranormal events, worthy of your home library.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Emma on April 12, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video
I couldn't stand to watch to the end because the narrator as the most mono tone voice, yet tries desperately to be dramatic.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By librarylady on March 25, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video
The only reason why I watched this documentary all the way thru is because I have experienced sleep paralysis myself. Unfortunately, this film isn't what I expected. From the outset it is clear that the narrator/filmmaker is highly biased. He focuses on other culture's experiences with sleep paralysis and essentially glosses over what the field of medicine has to say. It isn't wrong to accept another culture's explanation but without a full counter argument it feels rather one dimensional. Part of my issue with this is because he highlights several groups that have a rich cultural and religious heritage that informs what they do, how they interpret the world and their place in it. Sleep paralysis, spirit possession and the like have a place in their cultural frameworks -- it has a function but it isn't addressed. However the main reason why this gets a 2-star rating is because his approach -- over dramatization, spooky music and attempts at frightening the viewer -- detracts from the subject matter and actually diminishes the seriousness of these experiences. This documentary has an area-51, conspiracy theory, big foot in the bushes kind of feel that is unnecessary and annoying! That probably wasn't his intent but it is how it comes across.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Scott Jornlin on January 5, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video
This is the most compelling program on the sleep paralysis mystery out there, the kind of in-depth international research that should be the standard for the paranormal field. I commend the Grays for their unparalleled efforts.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Victoria J. Dennison on July 14, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video
It was a well done documentary. I gave it a three because I consider it average. The subject matter is creepy and the film informative. I believe there is a difference between sleep paralysis and a psychic or spiritual attack that many people have experienced. As a child I experienced sleep paralysis once. I woke up (kind of) and could not move to become fully awake as my mind was and it was pretty terrifying. It was like being caught between here and there. But, there is a big difference between that and being held down and sexually assaulted by something that is not in physical form.

This documentary explored both avenues.
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It might have rated 3 or even 4 stars if the subject matter had been presented in a more serious and straightforward manner.

The academicians, for the most part, were keeping the integrity of the film on track but then they began to waver and deviate once the topic of spirit possession was introduced.

Sleep paralysis is a physiological phenomena, it has nothing to do with spirit possession.
When we as people were less learned it was only natural to attribute this frightening experience as the result of a demonic presence.

As far as Zanzibar is concerned, IMHO that was a classic case of mass hysteria.

The narrator was annoying, speaking in that deliberately paced monotone to help create a supernatural atmosphere and often contradicting the academicians. It was like, get your stories straight, this is ridiculous.

In the end, we are neither educated nor frightened.
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I knew more about sleep paralysis prior to the movie than watching it. I have had sleep paralysis on three occasions. They clearly hyped this as scary to get anyone to watch it, because there was absolutely nothing scary about it. The documentarian/ subject briefly touches on the fact that it is usually a tall man figure, an old crone, a goblin, or aliens that people see in sleep paralysis, but disregards the others and only focuses on the crone. The documentarian/ subject also goes more into voodoo and witchdoctors than some of the more frightening aspects of sleep paralysis, and he does not mention that if you have sleep paralysis more than once in a calendar year, you should go see a psychologist.

Could have been WAY better. It's a shame because I think it is the same director who did the Stanley Kubrick documentary and I really liked that one.
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I would have given this a higher rating if the narrator wasn't so Awful! The monotone delivery diverts your attention away from content. The other brother had a much better voice. Why someone would research a topic for 2 yrs and then destroy the end result is beyond me. This isn't an assignment anyone will be forced to watch, so it's extremely important the delivery is as pleasant as possible, especially if the creators want to be heard. The narrator HAD to know this isn't his strong suit...to put it very mildly.
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