A historical drama set in Roman Egypt, concerning a slave who turns to the rising tide of Christianity in the hope of pursuing freedom while falling in love with his mistress, the famous philosophy and mathematics professor Hypatia of Alexandria.
A once handsome playboy, César finds himself in a mental facility and he can't remember why. All he can remember is meeting the love of his life for one day, and then getting into a car accident which left his face horribly disfigured. But the pain of becoming physically undesirable may help him to find the truth. Written by
So superior to Vanilla Sky that you have to see it to believe it
How I wish I had seen this film before seeing Vanilla Sky. There is so much subtlety, so many interesting ideas in this that have been butchered or simply lost in translation in the Hollywood version. The ending of Vanilla Sky pretty much explains everything... Abre Los Ojos leaves most of it up to interpretation and the viewers' imagination. Upon my recent second viewing, I realized how many hints there are towards the twist in the film, and how many ideas and subjects for good discussion that are in the film. The direction in Vanilla Sky seemed fine before, but in comparison, it's really daft and unimaginative. The majority of the good stuff in VS is stolen directly from ALO. A lot of it is changed to fit Hollywood's standards(and we all know how... high... they are), and the authenticity of the great idea is almost lost through this. This is the third Alejandro Amenabar movie I've seen(the other two are Thesis and The Others), and definitely my favorite so far. Not many films can catch and keep your interest even when you've already seen a (bastardized and cheaper) version of it already. I couldn't take my eyes off it. Like Amenábar's other films, this is slow and deliberate(whereas Crowe's version, in comparison, seems somewhat rushed, trying to get to the end as fast as possible, despite being a full half hour longer), and it really works to the films benefit. The music is wonderful, and it fits perfectly in every scene. The mood and atmosphere of the film is great. The effects are excellent... by comparison, those of Vanilla Sky are overly flashy and obvious. Here, they're beautiful and very subtle, like the rest of the film. The cinematography is very good, and far superior to that of VS. I realize that this seems more like a comparison between the two films than a review, but I can't seem to find the words to express just how great this is. See it for yourself. And in the name of all that is good and just, see it before you even consider watching Vanilla Sky. I recommend this to fans of intelligent films and/or Alejandro Amenábar. This is quite probably the best film he has made so far(though I haven't seen Mar Adentro yet). 9/10
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