Film is a powerful medium, and the best ones can make you feel strongly one way or the other about fictional characters and their make-believe lives. These people exist only on the screen, and yet we can feel joy, fear, love, hatred and so much more for them as if they were living and breathing beside us. Most movies never accomplish this feat. And Sleeping Beauty is no different. Instead Julia Leigh‘s debut film manages something decidedly unique. The lead character is passive, bland and as emotionally inspiring as a wash cloth, but the actress who plays her? You just may find yourself feeling bad, embarrassed and fearful for her. Lucy (Emily Browning) is a college student like many others. She attends class during the day and at night works in a restaurant or office and occasionally volunteers for paid medical experiments. Sure, some nights she heads to swanky bars to do lines of coke with Asian women in the bathroom, but mostly she works hard. It never seems to be enough though as she’s always behind in her rent and at risk of being booted out by her roommates. Until she responds to an ad for a silver service waitress to work private parties. The interview is brief but invasive, and it comes with two warnings. Don’t make a career of this. And indiscretion will not be tolerated.