What are sleep and dreams made of? In an attempt to “acknowledge the scientists and artists who investigate the world of sleep and dreams”, as the authors put it, the documentary features contributions by experts who are studying this multi-faceted, fascinating and complex subject on many different levels.
The plot is divided into three main parts, filmed at different hospitals in Milan: investigating the link between dreams and psychosis (Department of Mental Health, Ospedale San Paolo); diagnosing and treating sleep disorders (Sleep Disorders Center, Ospedale Niguarda); investigating sleep learning (Department of Neurosciences, Ospedale Sacco). Here we witness transcranial magnetic stimulation, an innovative method for studying the outermost part of the brain: the cortex. The researchers keep track of the impact this disruption has on the rest of the system. This makes it possible to observe the brain during waking hours, when it behaves like a single structure, and during sleep, when it seems to be made of apparently unrelated areas.
The dreamlike quality of the work of Polish writer and painter Bruno Schulz acts as a common denominator for the plot. This documentary is the first work released by a group of students of Milan’s Scuola di Cinema, Televisione e Nuovi Media.