Sleep Dealer

Synopsis: Set in a near-future, militarized world marked by closed borders, virtual labor and a global digital network that joins minds and experiences, three strangers risk their lives to connect with each other and break the barriers of technology.
Genre: Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi
Director(s): Alex Rivera
Production: Maya Releasing
  5 wins & 7 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
90 min

Sometimes, during long shifts...

we'd hallucinate.

Or you might get hit by a surge...

end up blind.

We call the factories

"sleep dealers",

because if you work long enough,

you collapse.

But sometimes,

I'd forget where I was.

And everything came back to me.

My home.

The house where I grew up.

In Santa Ana del Rio...

Oaxaca, Mexico.

My name is Memo Cruz.

We need water.

And Memo?

Take a guess.


Hacking ForBeginners

Let's go, it's getting late.

I was just on my way out.

To me, Santa Ana was a trap.

Dry, dusty, disconnected.

But my father lived

in his memories of it.

He owned some land...

even hired local guys to help him.

The king of the town.

But they say he changed...

when they built the dam.

Since when?

This is nuts.

Hey Pop, can I ask you...

why are we still here?

Well, let me ask you:

Is our future a thing of the past?

You think it's funny?

Well, yeah.

That's impossible.

No. We had a future.

You're standing on it.

When they dammed up the river...

they cut off our future.

You weren't even born yet.

You don't know how that felt.

This might not look like much -

but it's ours.

And you want to let it dry up

and disappear?

Yeah. Exactly...

You think you know everything.

You don't even knowwho you are.

At least I know the world is bigger

than this milpa.

Hey, you made it!

Of course! Check it out -

I got nodes.

- Did it hurt?

- Nah.

Oh, come on...

Well... at first it burns.

Like having a hot nail driven

into your arm.

But I'm already working

as a bus boy in New York...

I mean, it looks like New York.

It might also be Los Angeles.

At first, all I could hear were

voices from around the village.

After a while, I started

to pick up voices from further away...

the big cities.

Where people like me...

were working in hi-tech factories.

I went to the node doctor last week -

and I already got a job!

Tijuana has the fastest connections.

Your DNA is your password!

Tell everyone I'm doing great -

and send a kiss to Paco.

Of course, you can do it too!

Anyone can connect.

All you need to do is...

What's u p?

Hey. How are the guys?


Rico's such a drunk.

He pissed on the electric fence.

One of these days that talking gun

will shoot you right in the ass.

Bring it on.

When are you gonna stop pretending

you're somewhere else?

To grow up in Santa Ana,

you needed an escape.

My brother was addicted

to American hi-def.

Right on!

That summer in Santa Ana

felt like any other.

We're taking off.

Give this to your crazy uncle.

Buy some beers on the way back.

Cold ones.

You got it.

See you soon.

What's wrong?

Don't like old time music?

Hey, what you watching?

Dude - that looks like Santa Ana.

No way...

That's your stupid radio...


What did you do?

I told her I'd go to the city...

find work...

help them any way I could.

Nice to meet you...


Luz Martinez.

- Occupation?

- I'm a writer.

Oh yeah?

Need a writing partner, baby?

Calm down, froggie!

My name is Filiberto.


Want me to put your bag up?

No thanks.

- Sorry.

- No problem.

Excuse me.

Where did you get them?

My nodes?

A long time ago...

from a guy, a friend.

My mom freaked out

when she saw them.

She's so old-fashioned -

she thinks they're just for sex.

Never seen them before?

Only on TV.

Where can I get some...

without paying for a doctor?

Well, you need somebody

to connect you...

a coyotek.

If you go to the alley

in front of "The Star"...

you can ask around there.

What's your name?


I'm Luz.

Are you coming from far away?

A tiny village...

Santa Ana del Rio.

Tijuana - City of the Future

Move it!

Play messages.

You have one new message.

Ms. Martinez -

This is the Institute for Bio-Media.

Your student loans are in severe


If you don't return our call,

we'll enter your apartment...

confiscate your belongings,

and sell them.

Have a nice day.

TruNode, the world's number one

memory market.

Display my account.

There has been no activity.







New document.


A migrant from Santa Ana del Rio.

Bio-thentication activated.

Tijuana, Mexico.

The biggest bordertown in the world.

It pulls people in like a magnet.

Even today, long after the border

has been closed.

Wandering souls keep coming...

carrying nothing but their dreams.

Today I met one.

I didn't think much of him.

Repeat the last ten seconds.

Please tell the truth.

At first, I didn't think much of him.

He looked...

like they all do.

A little lost...

holding on to whatever

was left behind.

Trying not to look scared.

Coming to Tijuana,

to work in the sleep dealers...

he should be.

Need a coyotek?

Lookin' for a node job?

I'll hook you up.

Need a connection?

Skinny dudes like you

are my speciality.

Know how to drive?

I'll get you a cab in London.

No? What about picking

oranges in Florida?


Don't want to hook up

with those jokers, right?

I wouldn't let them lube

my connectors...

much less give me a node job.

Cool. I understand.

I've been in your place.

I remember what it was like...

before I got nodes.

I'll hook you up...


and dirt cheap.

What do you say?

You up for it?

How much?


You remind me of my Uncle Tito.

He crossed the border in the old days...

by foot.

No joke!

Before nodes,

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Alex Rivera

Alex Rivera (born New York City, 1973) is an American film maker, best known for his films about labor, immigration, and politics. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Sleep Dealer" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 27 May 2024. <>.

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