At the beginning of the film, it is shown that a month earlier (April 27th) Rob had slept with his longtime platonic friend, Beth. A month later (May 22d), during the farewell party that his brother Jason and his girlfriend, Lily, made in celebration of Rob's new job in Japan, he encounters her again. However, when Beth arrives, she introduces a new man to the group, Travis. An argument between Rob and Beth erupts over this, and Beth is seen angrily leaving the party. However, shortly after the monster attacks, Rob receives a call from Beth while he and his friends — Jason, Lily, Hud, and Marlena — are evacuating by way of the Brooklyn Bridge.
Distressed upon learning that Beth is helplessly trapped in her father's apartment, a guilty Rob, having just lost his brother Jason to the monster, decides to attempt to rescue her. En route to Beth's apartment in Midtown, Rob and company are intercepted by the monster as he is being attacked ineffectively by the US armed forces, which forces the group to retreat to the subway.
Here, Rob and Lily mourn Jason's demise, after Rob informs their mother of his death. After discovering a route on the other subway lines, they trek through the tunnel, and it is here where the parasites from the monster attack. Rob manages to fight them off but in the process, Marlena is bitten. After Marlena's death in the field hospital from the bite, and assurances from one of the soldiers, the surviving trio then discover Beth's apartment, which is tilted badly against an adjacent building, thanks to the monster's earlier attack on the city.
After a harrowing climb up the adjacent building, they successfully rescue Beth and they hurry to the last civilian helicopters. Lily is separated from the rest and is forced to board a separate helicopter, with Rob, Beth, and Hud boarding another. However, their airlift was cut short when the monster attacked their helicopter during an unsuccessful bomb run. Rob, Beth, and Hud survive the crash in Central Park, only to have the monster eat Hud. Rob and Beth grab the camera and hide under the bridge.
Here, they dedicate their apparent demise to their love for each other, their friends who perished, and their families before the bombings destroy the bridge. The final contents of the tape go back to Rob and Beth's Coney Island date from a month earlier, where they are seen musing about their good day together and blissfully unaware of a satellite falling into the ocean from the distance.
- Status: Single
- Orientation: Straight
- Body type: 5' 10" / Slim / Slender
- Ethnicity: White / Caucasian
- Zodiac Sign: Virgo
- Smoke / Drink: No / Yes
- Children: Undecided
- Occupation: Marketing
- School: Washburn High School; Rob graduated, March 1998.
- Student Status: Alumni
- Collage: Rob Hawkins attended New York University. Both he and Beth McIntyre graduated, March 2002.
- Although Hud was filming most of the movie, the camera was actually Rob's camera. It was handled by Rob first on April 27th, and later by Jason and Hud on May 22, the day of Rob's farewell party.
- Besides his mother and brother, Rob has a grandfather, a nephew named Dominick and an Aunt named "Peg". There is a picture of Rob's baby nephew, Dominick, posted in his blog post titled "Anti-Blog".
- Rob is the only character who has deleted Tom from his Myspace page.
- It was initially speculated by fans that Rob knew more about the mysterious situation than he was letting on to anyone, due to his reaction (in the teaser trailer), that of being uncomfortable rather than terrified. This however, is not true.
- Robert Hawkins is a character on the U.S. post-apocalyptic drama Jericho. He is portrayed by British actor Lennie James.
- Some say that the hidden voice at the end ("Help us! "It's still alive") was Rob, however this is untrue and the hidden message isn't really true because J.J Abrhams said the bombing killed the monster, or might have been a coverup.