Could this crap actually happen?
While undergoing a heart transplant, Clay (Hayden Christensen) experiences “anesthetic awareness,” a condition that allows him to see and feel everything that’s happening to him but leaves him paralyzed and unable to do anything about it. From his unique and painful vantage point, Clay learns troubling truths about his young wife (Jessica Alba) as she struggles with her own demons.
When I actually watched this film I was expecting to be laughing my ass off at some of the cheesiest moments in cinema ever, but I was very surprised and ultimately absorbed.
First, I’m going to start on the bad stuff. Now I’m no doctor and don’t really care or understand about the body and health and everything like that, but this film is one of the biggest inaccuracies about health there has ever been. There a lot of improper uses of anesthetic procedures in this that just made me turn my head and wonder.
The premise is actually very interesting and original, but after awhile it starts to turn into a murder mystery, then out of nowhere it turns out that Hayden Christensen has an out of body experience like Swayze from Ghost. This is where this movie takes the turn for the worst and it starts to be just a normal clue-found murder mystery. Also, in many of these mind-bending psychological films there are usually very deep and touching messages, by the end. However, in Awake there isn’t really a message other than being rich is pretty cool.
I felt myself very attached to this film by the end however. I realized to myself that this is strictly a suspense and not supposed to be all that accurate. There are a lot of really interesting twist and turns that actually make this film less dumb and more interesting.
Hayden Christiensen actually as bad as he is as an actor, does a pretty ok job in this but he could’ve done a lot better. I feel like a lot of his moments were forced and not emotional enough to create a very believable character. The supporting cast does well by the end and actually do good jobs mostly Lena Olin, who plays the mother, who creates a character filled with grief of a past that she is ashamed of, and she creates a character by the end we sympathize with.
Consensus: I feel like this film could’ve been a whole lot better than it actually was, but features some great suspense to a film that just doesn’t have the message that could’ve saved this film.