Awake (2021) ending explained: Do humans sleep again?

Netflix’s Awake is a gritty sci-fi film that revolves around the storyline of sleep, mostly the lack thereof. It is set in the aftermath of a cataclysmic worldwide event, of sorts, that leaves humans with the ability to remain awake, much to their demise.

Under Mark Raso’s direction, ‘Awake’ stars Gina Rodriguez in the lead role as Jill, a mother, who is an ex-military officer and subsequent drug addict, with two children, Noah and Matilda.

The world is suddenly struck under an unknown apocalypse that results in a power outage and stoppage of anything electronically run. Humans, on the other hand, are left with a condition that keeps them either “on” or “off”, depriving them of sleep, keeping them awake until they die.

Eventually, it is revealed that Jill’s little girl, Matilda is still able to sleep, unlike the others, leading her to be labelled the special one who may be the only way humankind can find a cure to solving the downfall.

As the military takes control everywhere, scientists and doctors along with the military set up The Hub, wherein an expedition to finding the cure was set up using another woman who was also able to sleep. 

Jill, along with Noah and Matilda, embarks on a journey to reach The Hub, in an explicit hope to help find the cure using Matilda and an implicit hope of finding the other woman to help raise Matilda. 

Do they reach The Hub intact? Is The Hub safe for Matilda? Can a cure be found before everyone dies? 

The answers lie in the building climax, and we have you covered over its explanation.

Awake ending explained in detail:

Breaking into The Hub

As the familial trio reach their destination, Jill takes a solitary expedition into The Hub while the kids wait outside.

As she breaks into The Hub and tries to blend in with doctors and scientists, she spots the other woman with the ability to sleep.

She approaches her, in disguise, and asks her to look after her daughter once everyone dies. As she converses with the woman, Dr Murphy, a physiatrist and ex-colleague who leads The Hub, spots Jill.

Jill convinces Dr Murphy that she was here to help with the cure for the awake. 

All hell breaks loose

The kids who were waiting outside return with Dodge, a passer-by criminal, who drives them into The Hub. As they get attacked by the soldiers, Matilda reveals that she possesses the ability to sleep. Everyone is locked up, and Matilda is taken for research.

As Matilda gets examined for her special ability to retain her sleep, she comes across a chimp, who was also being examined, and the other woman who possesses the same ability.

It is then revealed that apart from humans and chimps, all other animals are able to sleep, and the reason for this unusual phenomenon is attributed to the apocalypse that must have messed with the human body.

As time passes, the sleep-deprived soldiers start hallucinating and mistake a spiky seed for a grenade and think that they are under attack, and open fire. As the firing escalates, the soldiers start to shoot each other and all hell breaks loose.

All the scientists, doctors and soldiers start killing each other and end up dying one after the other in the attack. Jill uses the commotion as a distraction and breaks free and rescues Matilda. 

In the meantime, Noah starts hallucinating too and cuts up a wire and passes out in a major electric shock. Matilda then remembers the defibrillator and brings it across to revive Noah. 

In a hurry, Jill and Matilda use the defibrillator on Noah in an incorrect manner, and end up passing out from an electric attack.

Rise and shine

As dawn rises, so does the family. All three of them wake up, completely surrounded by havoc and dead bodies. 

With the lack of a cure, Jill gets weary and trembles. As Noah tries to converse with her, Matilda tries to gather medical supplies from The Hub, which sparks her with the solution to the problem.

She tells Noah that she was able to sleep probably because, during the car accident, she must have died for a brief moment before she was revived by the police, which must have reset her body. This theory applied to Noah’s recent incident with the defibrillator too, which explains why he seems to be fine now.

Realising that this may be their last option to save their mother, they drag her into a river and drown her. 

Noah then tries to pump out the water from her lungs and the scene cuts to Jill letting out a gasp, implying her revival and the family’s survival.

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