Dave White
Awake Review

Dave's Rating:


How freaking boring can you make a movie and still get a theatrical release?

Who's In It: Hayden Christensen, Jessica Alba, Terrence Howard, Lena Olin

The Basics: Prince of the city (Christensen), heir to a superfortune, runs the family's huge business that does mergers and stuff that no one understands, but whatever, it makes him a quadrizillionaire. His mother (Olin) smothers him just because she's smothery. His girlfriend (Alba) allows him to pull her into the bathtub and wet her down while she's wearing a tiny little white cotton halter top. And then he needs a heart transplant that his doctor buddy (Howard) performs. Then Hayden stays awake during the surgery because of a drunk anesthesiologist and finds out that a whole lot of people are not exactly on his side with the whole heart thing.

What's the Deal? Isn't there anyone out there besides Eli Roth who knows how to make movies about people being lured to their doom by gangs of plotting evildoers? And yes, I know I'm in the minority about digging Hostel Part 2, but that doesn't make me any less right, because dang, how freaking boring can you make a movie and still get a theatrical release? That may be the ultimate lesson for cinema history from this film, because all that stuff I wrote about in the above chunk of this review? It takes well over 50-plus minutes for it to get itself all set up. And the whole movie is only 78 minutes long. Way to run out the clock, filmmakers.

Who's Particularly Awful: Christensen, who has yet to prove that his career isn't the result of some unusually powerful superagent. Only Brandon Routh makes less sense.

Who Tries to Save His Own Scenes, At Least: The totally underrated Christopher McDonald. He's this character actor. You know his face if not his name. He's the drunk anesthesiologist. And even with a dorky flask sticking out of his surgeon's scrubs (no, not kidding), one that the script calls on him to surreptitiously sip from in the waiting room of the hospital, in full view of total strangers, he manages to make it look like he's a professional in a way better movie than this.

Again, Just in Case You Skipped My Column and Went Straight to the Reviews: The ads for this tell you that one in 700 people actually experience physical awareness during surgery. This is false. And I am here to assert that you will get more enjoyment from reading an article about the phenomenon in a medical journal and then going down to your local hospital to volunteer to clean bedpans than you will from watching this movie.


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