Awakenings (1990)

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The movie begins in the 1930's, when Robert De Niro is a boy, who slowly starts disconnecting with the world, and goes into a sort of catatonic state. Flash ahead about 30 years later in the 1960's, Robin Williams is a psychiatrist who starts at a mental hospital, the same hospital that a catatonic De Niro is at. Robin Williams starts experimenting with a drug mixture, that eventually awakens the catatonic patients, including De Niro. De Niro eventually awakens and starts to experience life with Robin Williams. De Niro also starts to fall for a young woman, who seems to like him too, but then things start to go down hill for De Niro. He starts exhibiting unusual signs, like scratching his temple a lot and severe shaking. Eventually good things do not last very long.

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More for Awakenings


After Robert De Niro awakens, Robin Williams takes him on a ride around New York and Robert is amazed by all the surroundings. The movie is set in the early 1970s, but you can see plenty of vehicles around from the time that the movie was filmed (1990). Notice the square headlights that originally appeared in the late 70's.



During the scene where Robin Williams (the doctor) has to restrain Robert DeNiro (the patient), Robin accidentally broke DeNiro's nose. DeNiro insisted that they continue with the filming until the scene was completed because he knew, from prior experience, that he wouldn't be able to film for at least a week, until the swelling and bruising went down. And DeNiro actually was glad it happened because it corrected the bump from the prior broken nose.