MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Down 447 this week

Awakenings (1990)

7.7
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.7/10 from 73,335 users   Metascore: 74/100
Reviews: 159 user | 23 critic | 18 from Metacritic.com

The victims of an encephalitis epidemic many years ago have been catatonic ever since, but now a new drug offers the prospect of reviving them.

Director:

Writers:

(book), (screenplay)
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb: What to Watch - Guardians of the Galaxy

In the latest episode of IMDb: What to Watch, Keith Simanton talks with director James Gunn and actors Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana and Vin Diesel about their movie Guardians of the Galaxy.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 36 titles
created 26 Sep 2011
 
a list of 43 titles
created 30 Nov 2011
 
a list of 43 titles
created 02 Mar 2013
 
a list of 26 titles
created 9 months ago
 
a list of 22 titles
created 7 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Awakenings" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Awakenings (1990)

Awakenings (1990) on IMDb 7.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Awakenings.

User Polls

Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A prep school student needing money agrees to "babysit" a blind man, but the job is not at all what he anticipated.

Director: Martin Brest
Stars: Al Pacino, Chris O'Donnell, James Rebhorn
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

English teacher John Keating inspires his students to a love of poetry and to seize the day.

Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Robin Williams, Robert Sean Leonard, Ethan Hawke
Philadelphia (1993)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

When a man with AIDS is fired by his law firm because of his condition, he hires a homophobic small time lawyer as the only willing advocate for a wrongful dismissal suit.

Director: Jonathan Demme
Stars: Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington, Roberta Maxwell
Rain Man (1988)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Selfish yuppie Charlie Babbitt's father left a fortune to his savant brother Raymond and a pittance to Charlie; they travel cross-country.

Director: Barry Levinson
Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Tom Cruise, Valeria Golino
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A just-divorced man must learn to care for his son on his own, and then must fight in court to keep custody of him.

Director: Robert Benton
Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Meryl Streep, Jane Alexander
I Am Sam (2001)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A mentally retarded man fights for custody of his 7-year-old daughter, and in the process teaches his cold-hearted lawyer the value of love and family.

Director: Jessie Nelson
Stars: Sean Penn, Michelle Pfeiffer, Dakota Fanning
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Will Hunting, a janitor at M.I.T., has a gift for mathematics, but needs help from a psychologist to find direction in his life.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Robin Williams, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

Upon admittance to a mental institution, a brash rebel rallies the patients to take on the oppressive head nurse.

Director: Milos Forman
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In 1985 Dallas, electrician and hustler Ron Woodroof works around the system to help AIDS patients get the medication they need after he is himself diagnosed with the disease.

Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto
The Help (2011)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.

Director: Tate Taylor
Stars: Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer
Gran Torino (2008)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Disgruntled Korean War veteran Walt Kowalski sets out to reform his neighbor, a Hmong teenager who tried to steal Kowalski's prized possession: a 1972 Gran Torino.

Director: Clint Eastwood
Stars: Clint Eastwood, Bee Vang, Christopher Carley
Comedy | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An insurance salesman/adjuster discovers his entire life is actually a T.V. show.

Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Jim Carrey, Ed Harris, Laura Linney
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Ruth Nelson ...
...
...
Paula
...
Lucy
...
Rose
Barton Heyman ...
Bert
George Martin ...
...
Miriam
...
Sidney
Laura Esterman ...
Lolly
Dexter Gordon ...
Rolando
Jayne Haynes ...
Frances
Edit

Storyline

A new doctor finds himself with a ward full of catatonic patients. He is disturbed by them and the fact that they have been catatonic for decades with no hope of any cure. When he finds a possible chemical cure he gets permission to try it on one of them. When the first patient awakes, he is now an adult having gone into a catatonic state in his early teens. The film then delights in the new awareness of the patients and then on the reactions of their relatives to the changes in the newly awakened. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There is no such thing as a simple miracle.

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 December 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Despertares  »

Box Office

Gross:

$52,096,475 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Based on a nonfiction book by Oliver Sacks, with the character of Sayer based closely on Sacks himself. See more »

Goofs

Both times through "Slumber Boat" (Riley and Gaynor, 1898), Leonard's mother substitutes the first half of the second verse ("Baby's fishing for a dream") for the second half of the first ("His line a silver moonbeam is"). See more »

Quotes

Dr. Sayer: You'd think at a certain point all these atypical somethings would amount to a typical something.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Wogan: Episode dated 20 May 1991 (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Always Chasing Rainbows
Written by Harry Carroll and Joseph McCarthy
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Fascinating and Moving Story
18 February 2005 | by (Atlanta) – See all my reviews

Awakenings is the most emotionally moving film I have ever seen. It delves deeply into one of the worst human fears, losing the ability to move and function, but it's never forced or manipulative, and there's no heavy-handed message or moral. It's just a fascinating story that's beautifully told.

The acting is as good as you will ever see. Robert DeNiro deftly handles all the emotional and physical challenges of his role, and Robin Williams demonstrates convincingly that he is an actor, not just a comedian. Williams is perhaps a bit too nerdy at first, but he captures perfectly all the hope, fear, exhilaration, and anguish that a doctor in that situation must be experiencing. Awakenings is based on actual people and events, and, to me at least, real events are always more powerful than even the best fiction.

Awakenings had big-name talent and Oscar nominations, but I don't think it ever had a big box office or became a popular video rental. That's a shame. I like escapist fare as much as the next guy, but once in a while, everyone should see a movie that you will remember and think about for a very long time. Awakenings deserves to be at the top of your list of movies to see.


113 of 119 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Thanks for nothing prople who give away ratings heramb-naria
The scene that just broke my heart... ssweet6
extremely underrated zzazzah
What's the world coming to? wassuoof
Vin Diesel techiebelle
similar movies kotsnirvana
Discuss Awakenings (1990) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?