Terrence Howard Weekend – Awake (2007)

awaeDirector: Joby Harold

Writer: Joby Harold (Screenplay)

Starring: Hayden Christensen, Jessica Alba, Terrence Howard, Lena Olin, Christopher McDonald, Sam Robards, Arliss Howards, Fisher Stevens


Plot: The story focuses on a man who suffers “anaesthetic awareness” and finds himself awake and aware, but paralyzed, during heart surgery. His mother must wrestle with her own demons as a turn of events unfolds around them, while trying to unfold the story hidden behind her son’s young wife.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Tension Thriller


Story: Awake starts as Dr Jack Harper (Howard) is looking back on patients that he has lost on the operating table and most recently his friend Clay (Christensen). So the film kind of gives away the ending in the opening scene, way to go. Anyway we do move back to see Clay with his girlfriend Sam (Alba) as we learn that Clay is one of the most powerful men in New York but he needs to keep his relationship secret from his mother Lilith (Olin) while he prepares for heart surgery.

When Clay finally tells his mother about Sam he runs off to get married followed quickly by the call for his surgery to happen, saying his goodbyes before heading to the operating table where his nightmare is about to beginning as he suffers from anaesthetic awareness which involves him knowing and feeling everything going on during the operation, which includes the plan to murder him by the very people he trusts.

Awake plays into a real terror of being under anaesthetic and experiencing the surgery. We do get the extra plot twist with it all being a planned murder which is a nice twist and adds to the terror because there is nothing the victim could do. I liked how this didn’t go down the spiritual road when he has his out of body experience we don’t us that to solve the situation the truth gets exposed through human error. Where this could come off disappointing it the fact it starts by saying Clay died on the table which kind of takes away the tension needed for the  final twist.


Actor Review


Hayden Christensen: Clay is a billionaire son in New York, he needs a heart transplant and has befriended the doctor who needs to perform the surgery. He is happily in love with the beautiful Sam and marries her just before his operation. While under the operation he suffers from anaesthetic awareness as he suffers through the pain of the operation hearing how the team is planning his murder. Hayden is good in this role but is helpless through the film.clay

Jessica Alba: Sam is the beautiful fiancée of Clay who makes him happy with everything in his life, she is a secret to his mother but we learn that not everything is what it seems when it comes from her affection for Clay. Jessica is good in this role as we get to see her in a different light for once.sam

Terrence Howard: Dr Jack Harper is the surgeon that is performing the operation on Clay, the two have become friends but he has a reputation of having malpractice lawsuits to his name. while performing the surgery we learn his true nature. Terrence is his calm self through this film giving us the performance you would expect to see.jack

Lena Olin: Lilith Beresford is Clay’s overprotective mother who wants her choice of doctor to perform the surgery, she doesn’t approve of his son’s choice of Sam and only wants the best for him. Lena is solid in this role but considering how important she is we don’t see enough of her character early on.

Support Cast: Awake has a good supporting cast that are all involved in the final outcome of the story.

Director Review: Joby HaroldJoby gives us a thriller that plays on a real terrifying moment that keeps us on edge throughout.


Crime: Awake brings us into a crime that looks like it could be achieved by professionals you trust with your life.

Mystery: Awake keeps us wondering to what the motives behind the team the big mystery.

Thriller: Awake keeps us on edge throughout at we see if Clay can make it through the surgery.

Settings: Awake keeps most of the important scenes inside the hospital with on the operation table or the waiting room.
Special Effects
: Awake has good effects when it comes to the surgery being performed.

Suggestion: Awake is a film to try, I believe thriller fans will enjoy this one. (Try It)


Best Part: Murder twists.

Worst Part: Giving away the end in the opening scene.


Believability: The surgery could happen but the murder seems too much.

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $8,6 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 24 Minutes

Tagline: When they planned her husband’s murder they never thought he’d be the one.


Overall: Thriller that strikes into a fear into something anyone could have to go through.




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