Karla (Sara West) is a medical student who is passionate to learn everything relating to insomnia and understand the real cause. This passion is fuelled by her brother, Blake (Benson Jack Anthony), suffering from a significant sleep disorder. The doctors in charge of Blake feel they cannot do anything else to save him. Naturally, she refuses to give up on him.
For Karla, her brother is all she has left as both of her parents died horrifically. Thankfully, Karla’s lecturer reveals a secret underground facility located on the same campus where she studies. Her lecturer also explains that he is currently trying to help two other people, just like her brother. Karla accepts the invitation to join and begin further trials as she feels this is her last chance to save his life.
Thankfully, Karla will not be alone in her quest to try and save her brother. Joining her is her best friend, ex-boyfriend, and the lecturer himself, who are all currently in the medical profession. As they begin the process of tests, Karla finds many secrets within the lab and begins to suspect there is more to it than her brother just suffering from a lack of sleep. Her brother has something far more sinister inside him than she could ever imagine.
Awoken tackles an exciting concept. Are people struggling to sleep due to a condition or something far worse? It is a fun idea as a horror movie. For the most part, the film’s setup is pleasing as we understand Karla’s desires to cure her brother’s condition.
Visually this film is pleasing, and the same can be said about the film’s audio track. There are some moments that work well here as a horror movie, such as jump scares and gore. The kills and death sequences are also pleasing and creative. Visual effects are pleasant and creepy, and I would say the same thing about the set designs of the underground lab where most of the film is located.
As a plot, while I enjoyed the film’s outline and concept, there are many issues, and sadly, I have several problems with the film. As a horror, many elements are familiar, predictable and some ingredients are extremely hard to accept. All performances are either a hit or miss from start to finish. The film’s villain is far too obvious and I must ask what kind of campus has an underground lab that no one really knows about to study in and help those with insomnia. The film’s biggest issue was the quick and lazy ending that delivers no surprises but an obvious showdown in the third act and a twist which, again, has been done repeatedly.
Overall, this film has a great concept and idea. Visually it is quite pleasing, and the effects are also positive. The audio track is a blast, and jump scares truly work wonderfully. But while I enjoyed the story and the film’s concept, it is all far too familiar, and nothing here feels new or fresh. Many moments and character outcomes are far too predictable, making the film’s runtime feel somewhat dull and uninteresting. Performances are also hit and miss, but most importantly, the movie’s ending feels rushed, weak and, again, brings nothing new or exciting to horror fans.
Awoken (2019) is Now Available DVD!