Reviews · The Foundry

Movie Review: Before I Awake

Hi all,

I am back, this time with a movie review of Before I Awake. a horror/phycological thriller created by Mike Flanagan. It is a Netflix movie, and I think it only recently came out but was created in 2016. Certain issues with production stopped this movie from being released until it was picked up by Netflix.

This is the part where I say there will be spoliers ahead as my review general do contain some, but if you do not want a spoilered review then do not read further.

The movie is about a couple Jessie (Kate Bosworth) and Mark (Thomas Jane), who adopt a young boy called Cody Morgan (Jacob Tremblay). Their own young son called Shawn has recently passed away, for which the couple are still grieving for in their own way. Jesse herself goes to therapy sessions, which Mark used to attend also. There is friction between the couple through the first part of the movie, however they believe the adoption will allow them to move on.

Now this is where things get interesting, the couple soon find out that Code is a special child. More so then usual, when he sleeps his dreams come alive. In the form of  various butterflies at the start, this abilities is shown further throughout the movie once Jessie shows Code a video of their deseased child. However this ability has a darker aspect, in the form of a shade or ghost. This happens because Code is still affected by the death of his own mother, the grief it has caused has had a large affect on his still young mind.

The shade takes or kills Mark towards the start of the final act of the movie, prompting Jessie into motion who at this point had been hoping this ability would help her get over her son. The final third of the film is Jessie trying to figure out how to deal with the shade, try and get Mark back and help out Cody.

So the above is the general plot of the movie, which I fairly liked. The thing that took it beyond just a normal horrror movie and more into a thriller was the character progression for Jessie. She started off the movie closed off, and used Code ability to be with her dead child again. Even if it is only apart of Code imagination, later on she actively tries to find a way to help Code and does by the end of the movie. The final act of the movie was superb, her way of dealing with her own demons of how her son died and helping Code deal with his.

It went beyong a horror with jumped scares, of which there was only one towards the start of the movie. It turned in a average movie to something I would watch again, just to see her motive change through the movie.

The acting within the movie was good, ranging from average in the case of Mark and a lesser extent Code to great in the form of Jessie. Though I was surprised at Code or Jacob Tremblay ability to act, he did manage to convey the feelings of a frightened little boy very well at his age.

The ghost or shade while being what looked to be very baic in terms of CGI, still showed a very powerful figure. Its whole purpose and motions were amazing, the design of it was striking and once I figured out what it convey in terms of Cody physci brought out a level of sympathy for me.

Overall I really liked the movie, I would watch again sometime in the future. It is one to watch on Netflex, which appears to be having a lot more original content now.


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