There is no such thing as a simple miracle
There is no such thing as a simple miracle
D: Penny Marshall
Columbia Tristar (Lawrence Lasker & Walter F. Parkes)
USA 🇺🇸 1990
121 mins
W: Steven Zaillian [based on the book by Dr. Oliver Sacks]
DP: Miroslav Ondricek
Ed: Jerry Greenberg
Mus: Randy Newman
PD: Anton Furst
Robin Williams (Dr. Malcolm Sayer), Robert DeNiro (Leonard Lowe), Julie Kavner (Eleanor Costello), Ruth Nelson (Mrs. Lowe), John Heard (Dr. Kaufman), Penelope Ann Miller (Paula), Max Von Sydow (Dr. Peter Ingham)
Based on an inspiring true story, Robin Williams plays a young neurologist who treats a group of patients suffering from encephalitis with a new drug, which brings them out of their catatonic state for the first time in 30 years, but the victims soon start to become immune to the drug and slip back into their comatose states.
The movie is a sentimental tearjerker, which has a needless pantomime villain in the shape of John Heard's character, but Robin Williams and Robert DeNiro are both excellent and have a fine on-screen partnership.  Penelope Ann Miller is also very good as DeNiro's love interest.
A truly emotional experience.

Robert DeNiro & Robin Williams in Awakenings
Robert DeNiro & Robin Williams in Awakenings
Did You Know:
Dr. Sayer treats the comatose Leonard with a drug called Levodopa (L-DOPA). This was the same drug used to treat Robin Williams' own Parkinson-like symptoms shortly before his death in August 2014.

Award Wins & Nominations:


Wins: none

Nominations: 5 (Best Picture; Best Actor in a Leading Role (x2); Best Ensemble Cast; Best Screenplay - Adaptation)


Wins: none

Nominations: 3 (Best Picture; Best Actor in a Leading Role; Best Screenplay Adaptation)


Wins: none

Nominations: none


Japanese Academy Awards (Best Foreign Film); National Board of Review (Best Actor); New York Film Critics (Best Actor); USC Scripter Awards (Best Screenplay)