Dead Awake (2016) Poster


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Not worth staying awake for
TheLittleSongbird26 May 2018
'Dead Awake' drew me into seeing it, with a cool poster/cover, an intriguing and quite creative premise and as someone with a general appreciation for horror. That it was low-budget, which from frequent personal experience is rarely a good sign due to that there are so many poor ones out there, made me though apprehensive.

It is sadly however yet another film seen recently, hence some reiteration because the exact same strengths and flaws are here present in those films, that to me was incredibly disappointing considering its potential which it doesn't do anywhere near enough with. 'Dead Awake' is not great, or good, has a fair share of problems (fairly big ones too) and doesn't do enough with its potential, which was hardly small. There are however a couple of decent, even good, qualities in 'Dead Awake'.

Lets start with the positives. The scenery is atmospheric, likewise with the decent way it's shot.

A few unsettling moments here and there.

However, the story does feel over-stretched and some of it feels vague, under-explained in the last third where the film especially became duller, more predictable, more senseless and less scary it got. Too many characters are too sketchy and with nowhere near enough to make one want to endear to them. Their irritating and illogical decision making and behaviours frustrates. Making the film feel bland and forgettable with not enough heart put into it. The effects are ropy at best and the acting never rises above mediocre and often awful.

Dialogue can be stilted and rambling while the pace is uneven, dragging in a lot of the second half and never is it exciting. Found too many the supposedly shocking moments not surprising or scary and the supposedly creepy atmosphere dreary, due to the excessive obviousness and the lack of tension and suspense. A lot of the film has underdeveloped plot elements and often nonsensical and confusing character motivations.

There is very little threat here and what there is of it is used poorly, while the psychological elements are unimaginative and are more odd than scary, completely failing to show the horror of sleep paralysis which is actually terrifying but completely trivialised here. Some badly sagging momentum too. The direction is pretty leaden and the music doesn't really fit.

Concluding, very poor. 2/10 Bethany Cox
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Get some sleep
nogodnomasters5 July 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The film opens with the definition of "sleep paralysis." And don't worry if you missed it it is repeated by Dr. Tank Girl (Lori Petty). Beth has it and her twin sister Kate (Jocelin Donahue) doesn't. Soon Beth doesn't have it and Kate does as does nearly everyone around her. During this time they are visited by a hag who chokes them. Sometimes they die. Like Santa, you must either believe or be very pretty for it to come visit.

Go to sleep and see a hag. Not as interesting as a Freddie film, where you move around in your sleep trying to escape. Face it, people laying there getting choked by a hag is low energy. The cover scene was interesting as a spider lowers itself on the open eye of the paralyzed girl, except we see her move her eyelids afterwards...something I might have done with a spider descending into my eye and not wait until I am choked. The sister relationships didn't work for me, it seems they were not developed properly as if they cut a scene. It wasn't until the end that we got the real story. And the final scene with Tank Girl should have come in the middle of the film and been part of the feature.That is the formula we want to see. I didn't find the film scary, but if you have sleep paralysis it might scare the bejesus out of you. And would you sleep around a guy who looked like Hassan (Jesse Borrego)? Hey, Hassan, as long as you are not sleeping, go take a shower and wash your greasy stringy hair.

Guide: infrequent F-word. No sex. Brief blurred butt body double nudity.

Winner of Best Thriller Feature Film Award at Shriekfest 2016.
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Dream on
kosmasp31 October 2020
Well for the characters here, that's not good advice. Still if you are into horror, you want certain things to happen. You expect them to happen. So this does check a lot of boxes. Which makes it likely you will "enjoy" the movie - if you are into horror movies.

The theme has been done before, you may feel it has been done better than this. But while this isn't the best movie ever made, this is quite well made. The actors give it their best, for a small budget movie. Characters are cliche of course and this is overall predictable, with a scare at the end (or twist?) you won't be surprised by. It may be satisfying for most viewers though ...
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So slow you will die trying to stay awake...
paul_haakonsen30 December 2018
When I sat down to watch "Dead Awake", I didn't know what I was getting myself into, aside from it being a horror movie.

Right, well this movie was, and I kid you not, definitely not worth the time, money or effort I spent on watching it and getting to watch it.

While "Dead Awake" definitely had a very interesting concept upon which it founded its storyline and plot, it just turned out to be a horribly boring execution of the potential, and that resulted in it turning into a boring story, that was seriously lacking scares.

The movie had adequate make-up and special effects, but surely would have fared better with a bigger budget. But I don't think having better effects and make-up would actually do much in terms of salvaging the movie from sliding downhill as fast as it did because of the boring story.

"Dead Awake" had some okay acting performances delivered by an adequate cast, despite them having so very little to work with and effectively being shackled by a horrible story.

If you are in for the evening and plan on watching a horror movie, and you find yourself with the choice falling on "Dead Awake", just browse on and find something else, because this is not worth the time.
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Lori Petty And The Hag!
wandernn1-81-68327412 May 2020
Surprised to see Lori Petty in anything anymore. Remember back in the day when she used to be in more mainstream movies? Well she's gotten a lot older since then!!!

So this movie...seems to fail on most levels, but not quite all.

'If someone had defeated it I would have found them. I've studied thousands of medical records, researched supposed cures from all over the world.'

'Did you Try the Online Message Boards?'

'I didn't think of that.'

-1 Star for Terribly incompetent scientist!!!

-1 Star because I predicted the ending almost down to exact specifics. Haha
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How to say this respectfully !!! It was just not good .. at all.
Aktham_Tashtush25 December 2018
So first i gotta complement Jocelin Donahue ,, she did well in the beginning of the movie doing the two sisters roles ,, but the movie plot was just bad ,, the script was slow for a Horror/Thriller genre ,, watched it on my laptop "thankfully" so i kept on speeding up to see the good part till i found myself in the credits :D

The cast was okay ,, i watched Jesse Bradford before "in a comedy" :D so this was weird ,, Jesse Borrego "Dr. Hassan" was just not sensible to be a psychiatric , and even Lori Petty "Dr. Sykes" was so obvious and not engaging .

My advice find some other movie to watch ,, Not recommended.
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Dead Asleep
dcarsonhagy29 May 2017
Warning: Spoilers
"Dead Awake" centers around two sisters (both played by Jocelin Donahue). One is a recovering addict, the other is a social worker. After they both start having the same nightmare (which involves dying during sleep paralysis), some digging is done and it seems there have been many people dying under these same circumstances.

I did not find anything original in this movie. The "monster" looks like it crawled--literally--out of "The Ring" franchise. One scene was practically stolen from the original "Nightmare on Elm Street." I'm glad those involved with this POS decided to be sure everyone knows when something bad is going to happen because each victim is treated to a "lights-off; lights-on" trick.

I had to laugh at one reviewers summation, especially when they warned about watching out if you are drinking or eating something because you may spill your drink or you might drop your food. Funny, the only thing I thought about during the movie was how I could keep my food and drink DOWN.

Rated R (couldn't tell you why) and not recommended.
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Not bad at all.......
willandcharlenebrown15 September 2020
Scary moments and sleep paralysis is real. I've had it a few times and it's terrifying. The ending got cheesy otherwise I would have given it a 7. Great idea to make this sleep phenomenon into a horror film.
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Good Cast, Mediocre Attempt At Making Freddy Krueger A Woman!
tesswysko22 April 2019
Honestly, I've seen it all before, and done better... but that's not to say this didn't have a good cast, and wasn't written written well though! It's an alright movie for Netflix, but I wouldn't pay for it!
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Solid with genuine fright moments
nowego13 May 2017
Most horror fans will have seen it all before and this one, written by Jeffry Reddick, who was part of the Final Destination series was the main reason I looked at it.

Jesse Bradford and Jocelin Donahue are very solid as Evan and Kate, the lead characters and they hold the movie together well.

That's all I am going to say about the movie, I'm not into giving the plot away and going into detail about a movie like some reviewers, you will have to check it out yourself.

Word of warning. Use careful timing if you are eating and drinking during it. I nearly wore my drink and could have choked on my food in a few scare moments that genuinely gave me a fright even though I was expecting them. Kudos to the makers, they did a good job there. Few movies make me jump the way this one did.

While I am not a huge fan of horror movies, I would recommend this one to any horror aficionado.

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Dead: yes. Awake: hardly
brunovanael5 June 2021
Nightmare on Elm Street where Freddy is replaced with a retired Samara and the audience is constantly triggered to do what it's not supposed to do : fall asleep.
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Dead on Arrival
scythertitus19 March 2019
This film takes a very real problem and turns it into some kind of monstrous evil, which is exactly what you don't want to do with Sleep Paralysis, of which I myself suffer from.

The last thing I want to see is a film that adds to those existing feelings of being stalked and under threat whilst not being able to move. Not only that, but it is also generally not a very good movie, it is like what the worst version of Nightmare in Elm Street could have been. Take away the cool deaths and the memorable villain and replace them with dark and boring scenes with occasional jump scares and nebulous mythology.

Overall this is a movie, so that's one thing, but the acting, story and subject matter lack a lot in execution and really bring it down, best to avoid.
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One of the best films on that metaphysical entity that appears during sleep paralysis. Recommended to the fans of metaphysical horror films
Mivas_Greece10 March 2021
Metaphysical horror movie. The film focuses on a metaphysical entity that occurs over the centuries and around the world in many cases of paralysis during sleep. Each different culture has given it a different name like Mora. The film has a very interesting plot, quite well written and with convincing acting, while it had enough suspense and some plot twists. However, it is a bit long in duration and therefore has breaks in the suspense, I would prefer to be shorter and maintain the suspense throughout. Very good overall and above average. Recommended for the fans of the genre.
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Full sleep, no nightmares
spencergrande623 November 2017
A film about sleep paralysis, the only theme I've been more scared of going in to a film (see: "The Nightmare") than I have waking up the next day (as in, I thought I was going to have nightmares and wake up paralyzed but then woke up the next day having forgotten all about it).

Well here's the fiction take, including the woefully underutilized since "The House of the Devil" actress Jocelin Donahue. It's too bad the the film itself is a tepid, creaky tale of a sleepytime boogeyman that strangles you while you lay there paralyzed. That's not exactly scary. The plot is just pure nonsense and the film has literally no tension nor atmosphere to speak of.
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It's like The Ring meets Nightmare on Elm Street
zombiefan8927 September 2017
It's predictable. It's full of clichés, and you'll see every death coming in advance. Still, the concept is pretty good. The thought of some evil force attacking you as you sleep, sounds like another famous, far better, horror movie. The monster was more subtle in appearance than Freddy Krueger. She was basically a much older version of The Ring girl. The director clearly drew inspiration from The Ring and told the actress, "You remember The Ring? Yeah, Crawl on the floor toward the camera like that!"
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Ironically, it's a real SNOOZEfest.
horrorgasm18 May 2017
Uh oh! A scary ghost is slowly spreading through a group of friends and picking them off one by one! But this time it involves sleep paralysis so this time it's different, right? RIGHT?

It's kind of like a really slow-paced, watered down version of The Ring. The ghost isn't particularly scary once you actually see what she looks like, which happens pretty early on. Death scenes are uninteresting and repetitive. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that a movie can't be a good horror without buckets of blood, but for that to work there needs to be tension and suspense, and there's none to be seen here. Most of the movie just consists of the characters standing around talking about the ghost and trying to convince various people that it exists.

Sorry to anyone who actually likes this, but basically this is a horror-lite movie for people who don't actually like horror movies. That's the only crowd I can imagine enjoying this. It's not scary, it's not thrilling, and it's not interesting. It's an absolute waste of a great concept that maybe someone better can try again someday.
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Mediocre at best
amichnea14 May 2017
The movie is nothing new, nothing you haven't seen before. I could name about 3 4 just last year.

I am not familiar with the actual "sleep paralyses" problem but it must be terrifying. This film is obviously using it and mixing it up with "The Ring" and the many other similar horror movies.

I honestly got bored and even started to make jokes as some of the things happening were just plain silly. Very Blah movie. Would not recommend it to anyone looking for a good horror film or a good scare. Not going to get any with this one.... Sorry, I did jump once, the first time I saw the "entity" appear. Then it was all fun and giggles.
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A great movie.
SashaDarko24 August 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Actually a great horror movie, even though it's basically a mix between Nightmare on the Elm Street and Ring, nothing new at all.

The monster is like a girl from the Ringu and it also prefers to crawl rather than walking to do its, ehm, things, which is stupid and always was stupid ("look ---- I CRAWL! SLOOOWLY! ARE...YOU...SCAAAAARRRRRRED? No? F/ck.").

However, the movie is captivating and atmospheric, not to mention very well done overall (aside from a couple of fade-ins by the editor, why?). Actors do their best and they're believable. The characters are standard (like all ya Americans, right?), but not very stupid and ultra-thin, like in most of the other US / Hollywood horror movies. Some kind of movie magic happened here and I believe the great cast was one of the reasons.
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nothing special
re-animatresse17 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
a very by-the-book, Hollywood-style budget horror movie written by Jeffrey Reddick, author of Final Destination and sequels. the acting and dialogue are not bad, though nothing special. the same goes for the monster design and make-up

my problem with the film is that it's primarily story-driven with a less-than-inspired premise: sleep paralysis is apparently an always-fatal phenomenon that entails sufferers being strangled to death in their sleep by an otherworldly entity, referred to as The Hag, who looks like an angry old woman. the movie takes what is genuinely a very frightening experience for a lot people and makes it -less- scary

it's essentially a poorly remade Nightmare on Elm Street with adult characters and a generic, unexplained Freddy. i can't recommend this movie, but if you're interested in the subject of sleep paralysis, try The Nightmare by director Rodney Ascher
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Forgot the whole thing as soon as it was over
km_staple15 July 2018
Bad acting, bad dialogue. Had some good scary moments but not enough for a full length movie. Please don't waste your time with it.
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Hit Snooze on Sleep Paralysis
thewakenarrative13 January 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Dead Awake (Beware there may be spoilers) - You may want to snooze through this one. We got a good 15-20 minute nap in and we're pretty sure we missed nothing. It's amazing that the 1 million year old sleep paralysis urban legend was solved in a 4-day span. All we can take away from this movie is that if you start to believe in the power of the chest-sitting Night Hag, tag you're it. Or, turn to bright lights, highly concentrated adrenaline and caffeine to fuel your non-sleeping lifestyle, worked out great for Hassan and Mr. Pang.

The story lines and back stories were overflowing, but they didn't fit together to add to the dynamic of this film; the connection between twins, the drug history, moving back home, just to name a few. If the plots lines don't align, how can you expect to beat sleep paralysis? Verdict: you can't. Good luck Kate!

Biggest scaredy cat - Tricks. Poor thing was terrified and had to scratch it's way out of the bedroom.

Most Likely to cheer on the Toros - Jesse Bradford, aka Cliff Pantone. We are loving the man bun on ya.

Most cringe-worthy scene - Experiencing sleep paralysis while a spider dangles down from the ceiling, only to land on your open eye. No thank you.

Overall Grade: D for dead.
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Great concept, great movie!
ejamc13 September 2017
For those of you thinking this movie is a rip off of "A Nightmare on Elm Street" , you have no idea what you're talking about! It's the same concept, sure, but taken in a completely different direction! Remember those Hmong teenagers that Hassan was talking about? That actually happened! That's where Wes Craven got the idea for "NES" from! And they really did their research about the Old hag, because I've read similar stories in collections of African-American folklore, only she was called "the boo-hag"!
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Really scary
zendytrendy-4324421 May 2019
What a scary movie. Looks like these reviwers never have expeeience sleep parylsis. This movie aint boring. Avatar is boring. afraid to sleep
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The Ring with sleep instead of VHS
brep9116 September 2017
As someone who has experienced sleep paralysis countless times, I can say the ordeal is extremely terrifying. The concept & real life experiences could have made this a very decent movie, but it completely missed the mark. This movie doesn't even deserve one star, but I that's the lowest I could rate it. I wasn't expecting one of the greatest movies ever made, but I at least thought I would have a jump moment, feel tension, anything. I just found myself checking to see how much time was left.
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What the hell, Jocelin?
filipsalapa14 May 2017
Watching "Dead Awake" made me sleepy. The acting was so dreadful I honestly wanted to get sleep paralysis myself - I guess experiencing that (horryfying condition nonetheless) would have been more interesting than listening to the wooden dialogues, watching no chemistry between ANY of the characters. The music that was such crap, that I honestly thought it was put on there by accident, the camera work, the lights, the sound in general, those inconsistencies. It was ...........

Nah.... you know what? No. To hell with it - watch it! I could go on and on and tell you why this movie is so appalling but no - watch it and see for yourself.

And when you reach the 50-minute mark and you get to the point where the main lead asks "Where's Linda?" and you get to "experience" the dialogue that follows.... the "ACTING" from both of the female characters pretty much sums up this garbage of a movie.

Yeah, watch it.

I suppose all I can say to the team that made this film is.... "great job" (with sarcastic, Heath Ledger's Joker's clapping).

2/10 because I know that Jocelin CAN act, it just seems to me she forgot how to do it this time.


My God, was that movie terrible.....
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