Life IS pain baby

Reviewed by: Alicia Glass
Published on: March 10, 2022 (URL is not
Available on: Amazon Prime Video
Content release date: 2007-11-30

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Review Rating: 6.5

Clay Beresford suffers “anesthetic awareness”, a condition that leaves the patient awake and aware but unable move or respond, during a heart transplant, and that awareness leads to dark revelations about everyone involved in Clay’s life.

The film’s…not bad. The attempts at combining an utter horror at being awake during surgery and the quiet betrayal of Clay’s new wife and his supposed friends doesn’t seem to mesh well. The idea that, one suffering from “anesthetic awareness” can, if they’re strong enough, learn the truth behind the lies people normally espouse is misleading and generally untrue. Medical science has a wide range of blow your mind drugs to prevent that sort of thing. But, it’s supposed to be a horror movie right? I would say more suspense than anything. Yes, it’s horrific to find yourself awake and in omg massive amounts of PAiN while they operate on you, plus hearing those same doctors you trusted your life to talk plainly about killing you and taking your money. But that particular horror, the earthy betrayal of it, isn’t explored in depth. Which is a shame, given that lead actor Hayden Christiansen already has experience at utter black betrayal from his portrayal of the younger Anakin Skywalker. And we all know who he becomes, right?

Jessica Alba does more or less fine as the girlfriend murderess Sam, although her part in the plan to get Clay is entirely predictable. Terence Howard delivers a grand performance as lead doctor Jack Harper, his soft spoken ways and trustworthy smile makes the ending all the more painful. And Lena Olin of The Queen of the Damned fame stands apart as Clay’s mother Lilith, battling demons of her own and doing whatever she has to to save her son.

The medical horror premise of the movie may attract people, but for sheer horror value, it still ranks behind Audition.