Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Awakening (2011)


“Without Science, people don't believe in nothing; they believe in anything.”

            Stories about the supernatural fascinate me yet at the same time, I am willing to admit as a twenty-six year old, they scare me. I want to believe there are spirits and ghosts but I also do not believe they exist. That could be because I have never experienced anything supernatural. Ghost stories do catch my interest. One ghost story/movie that caught my attention was The Awakening.
            In 1921 England, the people are still trying to come to terms with the loss of their loved ones during the War and from the Influenza epidemic. A group of people are brought to a house to try to connect with their loved ones. Among them are a couple who has lost their daughter and a young woman who lost her boyfriend in the War. The person in charge of the reading has the couple look into a crystal and to keep looking into it so they can see their daughter. Before the child’s image is in the crystal for too long the young woman jumps up from the table and exposes the person in charge as a charlatan and he is arrested. The young woman is Florence Cathcart. She has written a book and works to expose hoaxes and frauds.
            One day Florence is called upon to investigate a possible haunting at a boys school in the English countryside. One of the boys has recently died. All the other boys are visibly shaken by the loss of their friend. They all tell Florence that they have been seeing a ghost and hearing noises. Florence comes to the school before the boys are sent away for a holiday back to their parents. During her stay she begins to slowly unravel as spirits and even her own past are revealed to her.

            The Awakening started off really good. Florence Cathcart started off a good character. I liked how she was this new woman who was emerging in the 1920s, she was smart and plowed through with her work with a strong sense of herself. Then like most supernatural stories in movies it got out of hand and ridiculous. Florence started to just go crazy and to me the story of why she was brought to the house in the first place and what happened to her there when she was younger is just not great. I do not want to say do not watch The Awakening. The set, costumes, and atmosphere were good and are worth watching. Just be prepared for the story to be all over the place.