Taglines: Alex Gardner has an extraordinary gift. To keep it may cost him his life…
Alex Gardner (Dennis Quaid) is a psychic who has been using his talents solely for personal gain, which lately consists mainly of gambling and womanizing. When he was 19 years old, Alex had been the prime subject of a scientific research project documenting his psychic ability, but in the midst of the study, he disappeared. After running afoul of a local gangster/extortionist named Snead (Redmond Gleeson), Gardner evades two of Snead’s thugs by allowing himself to be taken by two men, Finch (Peter Jason) and Babcock (Chris Mulkey), who identify themselves as being from an academic institution.
At the institution, Alex is reunited with his former mentor Dr. Paul Novotny (Max von Sydow) who is now involved in government-funded psychic research. Novotny, aided by fellow scientist Dr. Jane DeVries (Kate Capshaw), has developed a technique that allows psychics to voluntarily link with the minds of others by projecting themselves into the subconscious during REM sleep (in other words, while they are dreaming). Novotny equates the original idea for the dreamscape project to the practice of the Senoi natives of Malaysia, who believe the dream world is just as real as reality.
The project was intended for clinical use to diagnose and treat sleep disorders, particularly nightmares, but it has been hijacked by Bob Blair (Christopher Plummer), a powerful government agent. Novotny convinces Alex to join the program in order to investigate Blair’s intentions. Alex gains experience with the technique by helping a man worried about his wife’s infidelity, and by treating a young boy named Buddy (Cory Yothers) who is plagued with nightmares so terrible that a previous psychic lost his sanity trying to help him. Buddy’s nightmare involves a large sinister “snakeman”.
Dreamscape is a 1984 American science-fiction adventure horror film directed by Joseph Ruben and written by David Loughery, with Chuck Russell and Ruben co-writing. It stars Dennis Quaid, Kate Capshaw, Max von Sydow, Christopher Plummer, Eddie Albert, David Patrick Kelly, Jana Taylor and Chris Mulkey.
Directed by: Joseph Ruben
Starring: Dennis Quaid, Kate Capshaw, Max von Sydow, Christopher Plummer, Eddie Albert, David Patrick Kelly, Jana Taylor, Chris Mulkey
Screenplay by: David Loughery
Cinematography by: Brian Tufano
Film Editing by: Richard Halsey
Costume Design by: Linda M. Bass
Art Direction by: R. Clifford Searcy, Jeff Staggs
Music by: Maurice Jarre
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: August 15, 1984