Alex Gardner (Dennis Quaid) is a talented young psychic who's frittering his gifts away betting on the ponies. That is, until he's coerced by his old pal and mentor Dr. Paul Novotny (Max von Sydow) into taking part in a dream research project in which his psychic abilities make him indispensable. The project concerns "dreamlinking," whereby talented individuals like Alex hook up via electrodes and project themselves into some troubled subject's nightmares, in which they not only observe but participate in the dream, hopefully effecting some remedy. Alex is by nature a feckless guy, a charismatic scoundrel sporting a Cheshire cat's grin. But he warms easily to his new role as dream-dwelling psychotherapist, having a core of decency. Not so his nemesis, Tommy Ray Glatman (David Patrick Kelly), a dreamlink prodigy and pawn of Bob Blair (Christopher Plummer), who runs the research project for the government (he's described as the "head of covert intelligence"). Blair is worried about the President (Eddie Albert), whose nightmares of nuclear holocaust cause him to escalate disarmament talks with the Russians, much to Blair's dismay, being your basic evil, slick, smarmy covert kind of guy. Turns out Blair's real aim is to use the project to train dreamlink assassins, his star pupil being psycho Tommy Ray and his test case the President. Only Alex is there to stop them.
Dreamscape is all business, with a well-structured screenplay that lays the groundwork for the film's many admirable performances. Kate Capshaw in particular is very dreamy as a research scientist and Dennis Quaid's love interest. And David Patrick Kelly is likely to become your worst nightmare, especially when he's the Snakeman, giving an often fantastical performance. But what you're most likely to remember from this wonderful thriller is the many vivid dream sequences, aptly surreal images from the troubled psyche. --Jim Gay
The President of the United States is about to be assassinated in a dream where there is no morning after. Only one man can save him--a man who must plunge himself into the President's horrendous nightmare. Dennis Quaid stars as Alex Gardner, a psychically gifted young man recruited to help Dr. Paul Novotny (Max Von Sydow) and the beautiful Dr. Jane DeVries (Kate Capshaw) in an experiment to help patients disturbed by menacing nocturnal illusions. But corrupt high-ranking government official Bob Blair (Christopher Plummer) has darker plans for Alex's unusual powers. Soon Alex is propelled inside the President's nightmare, a frightening wasteland of nuclear holocaust, and locked in a fantastic battle that could only happen in a dream. This action-packed science fiction adventure will excite and thrill you with its unusual journey through the mind's most terrifying recesses.
Audio Commentary by the Producer, Writer and Special Effects Artist - Special Effects Make-Up Making Of - Production Stills 16X9 - 1.85:1 - Color - English - 5.1 Dolby Digital, 5.1 DTS