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USA: Cohen Media Group
UK: Studio Canal
Cast: Rebecca Hall, Dominic West, Imelda Staunton, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, Shaun Dooley, Edward Judd, Joseph Mawle, Diana Kent, Richard Durden, John Shrapnel, Cal Macaninch, Lucy Cohu, Anastasia Hille, Andrew Havill, Tilly Vosburgh, Ian Hanmore, Steven Cree
Director: Nick Murphy
USA & UK: 102 mins
USA Rated: R for some violence and sexuality/nudity
UK Certificate: 15 contains strong violence and psychological threat
USA Release Date: 17 August 2012 (Limited Release)
UK Release Date: 11 November 2011
THE AWAKENING is set in 1921, in a post-war England where many of the bereaved seek solace in spiritualism. Haunted by the death of her fiance, Florence Cathcart (Rebecca Hall) is committed to debunking supernatural claims, using methodical and rational explanations. When she is asked to visit a boarding school in the countryside called Rookwood - to investigate the alleged sightings of a ghostly young boy - she feels compelled to take the job.
Once at Rookwood, she sets to work, laying traps and gathering scientific evidence. Gradually secrets begin to unravel and the mystery surrounding the ghost appears nothing more than a schoolboy prank. As Florence is set to leave, however, she experiences a chilling encounter that defies all reason. One of the schoolmasters, Robert Mallory (Dominic West), worries about Florence's disposition in the aftermath. The incident leaves her scared and confused, but she is determined to get to the bottom of it and decides to stay on while the rest of the children go home for Christmas.
She is not alone, however, as three others stay on with her: Maud (Imelda Staunton), the matron, whose initial request had brought Florence to the school; Tom (Isaac Hempstead-Wright), a young boy whose parents cannot care for him over the break; and Mallory, who, having recently fought in the Great War, is plagued by visions of the past.
Over the coming days the blurred image of a child-like ghost haunts Florence and she begins to doubt her resolve, increasingly unable to provide any logical explanation for the bizarre goings-on. As her bond with Mallory deepens, they are drawn to one another by their shared sense of loneliness and together they ready themselves to face their demons.
Directed by Nick Murphy, THE AWAKENING is written by Stephen Volk and Nick Murphy, Produced by David M Thompson, Sarah Curtis and Julia Stannard. It is an Origin Pictures Production.