JOEL BELLOWS can't dream. He suffers from Charcot-Wilbrand Syndrome or low dream recall.
Joel is a kindly, family man feeling the affects of middle-age creeping up, who volunteers his time to help elderly hospice patients and troubled youths.
But something is missing in his life. His wife nags him and his teenage kids don't respect him and he can only quietly take the abuse. Joel doesn't really know who he is or what he is supposed to be doing with his life. Joel is seeking answers. He feels trapped in a suburban, air-conditioned nightmare.
One day he purchases a Chinese salt lamp that guarantees, “peaceful sleep and vivid dreams”. At first it appears to have no affect. But then it opens a whole new world for Joel -- his dream world, where the once conservative, reserved, kind-hearted, nebbish family man, becomes the bad ass killer who can do anything he wants, consequence-free, because this is a fantasy world of his own creation and isn't real… or is it?
In his dreams, Joel begins seeing Chinese symbols which he discovers are prophesies from the I Ching, that come true in his waking life. These prophesies grow more and more deadly as Joel becomes involved with one of his students, ANNA, a young woman married to an influential corporate CEO, MR. GLASS, whom Anna has had a recent falling out. Joel becomes her protector as Mr. Glass wants to silence Anna for knowing too much about a secret classified government project his company is developing that could have global consequences.
Quickly the dream world crosses over into reality and it becomes impossible for Joel to decipher between truth and pure fantasy.
SLEEP WAKE DREAM is one man's darkly comedic search for meaning, identity and freedom, which he comes to realize, can only be found in his dreams.