Wide Awake

DVD Release: January 10, 2012
Wide Awake


Rosie O’Donnell, Denis Leary, Dana Delany and Joseph Cross star in this feel-good movie about the laughter, excitement and fun that come with being a kid!

Joshua (Cross) is a thoughtful ten-year-old looking for some simple answers to life’s eternal questions. The problem is that no one—including his concerned parents (Leary, Delany) and his colorful 5th-grade teacher (O’Donnell)—seems to be making any sense. Therefore, Joshua makes it his personal mission to unravel the mysteries himself…and in the process reminds everyone what it’s like to wake up to the world for the very first time. With great performances from an incredible cast, you’ll love all the comedy and adventure in this unforgettable motion picture.

Dove Review

Here is a feel-good movie with some depth to it! Young Josh Beal is a “seeker”, a young boy who attends Waldron Mercy Academy, a Catholic school, in Philadelphia. His grandfather has just passed away and Josh misses him desperately. He begins to seek a sign from God, to reveal himself and to show Josh that his grandpa is all right. This one is directed by the well-known director M. Night Shyamalan.

Young Josh deals with school life in which some of his friends wonder if there really is a God. One young man tells Josh that he doesn’t believe in God but if Josh does that is okay. In a nice scene Josh says that Superman and Indiana Jones aren’t real. Is God real? Grandpa says the snow is proof that there is a God (it had recently snowed). Where did the snow come from? God must have sent it. Some discussion on the reality of Hell also takes place. Kids pull pranks such as when one kid slides down a hallway in the mop bucket with a mop on his head and one kid removes a portrait of the Pope.

In one effective scene a young girl asks Josh if he has received that sign from God yet. “Not yet” says Josh. “Don’t worry, you will” replies the girl. In fact, something pretty amazing does take place by the end of the movie. I won’t give it away, but this is a story with spiritual roots and we are recommending it for ages twelve and above. Joseph Cross is terrific as young Joshua Beal as is Robert Loggia as his grandfather. In one touching scene, Josh reveals he has grown a lot in the past year when he tells his teacher, “One thing I have learned is the people I love don’t live forever.” Watch this one! If you are in need of a miracle, it just might renew your faith in them. This easily receives our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal.

Content Description

Faith: None
Integrity: None
Sex: A girl is called "hot" and a boy says he has a biological reaction when he is around her; a boy tells a girl she's prettier than a swimsuit model in a magazine.
Language: H (as a place)-4; H-1; S-8; Geez-2; Suck-2; The mention of eternal "damnation"-1; "Dork" is said good naturedly.
Violence: A storm is seen on TV; fire seen on TV; a body wrapped in a blanket is rolled away.
Drugs: A boy puts his grandfather's pipe in his mouth; a Cardinal takes medication for his trembling.
Nudity: A boy looks at a magazine with a model in swim-wear that has revealing cleavage.
Other: Death and grief; a child trembles as he has an epileptic attack; a kid sneezes on his hands; discussions on the reality of Hell and about the existence of God; an illustration is given with baseball as the analogy and Judas is the pitcher and the teacher refers to Jesus as the "big man" at bat; boys say they made up lies for confession; a boy removes a portrait of the Pope from a classroom but it is recovered.


Company: Echo Bridge Home Entertainment
Genre: Drama
Runtime: 88 min.
Reviewer: Edwin L. Carpenter