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At First Sight (1999)

 -  Drama | Romance  -  15 January 1999 (USA)
5.9
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 10,071 users   Metascore: 40/100
Reviews: 103 user | 55 critic | 21 from Metacritic.com

A blind man has an operation to regain his sight at the urging of his girlfriend and must deal with the changes to his life.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Jennie Adamson
...
Duncan Allanbrook
...
...
...
Virgil's Father
...
Betsy Ernst
Margo Winkler ...
Nancy Bender
...
Singer
Brett Robbins ...
Ethan
...
Jack Falk (as Willie Carpenter)
Charles Winkler ...
Health Instructor
...
Caroline
Kelly Chapman ...
Susan (as Kelly Chapman Meyer)
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Storyline

A driven Manhattan architect, Amy, relaxes at a resort and falls for the masseur, Virgil, blind since age 3 and assisted by his spinster sister. He helps Amy hear and sense the world, giving her new spirit and a burst of creativity. Over the sister's objections, Amy takes Virgil to New York for new, radical surgery. He regains his sight. He's disoriented and must learn to process these new images. Finding his place in a seeing world strains his relation with Amy; his absent father wants to connect with him now that he can see; then, retinal disease threatens to undo the surgery. Can love survive, will he find his new place and his old tranquillity, can Amy accommodate limits? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Science gave him sight. She gave him vision. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for scenes involving sexuality and nudity, and for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 January 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sight Unseen  »

Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£55,402 (UK) (30 April 1999)

Gross:

ESP 109,523,700 (Spain) (29 June 2001)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cast member Drena De Niro is the daughter of Robert De Niro, who also played a fictionalized patient of Oliver Sachs in Awakenings (1990). See more »

Goofs

When the doctors were operating on Virgil's eyes, you see his right eye closed as if he were sleeping normally. If they hadn't already operated on it, it would have been taped shut. If they had operated on it, it would have been covered with gauze which would be taped on his face. See more »

Quotes

Ethan: Are you blind?
Virgil: Yeah.
Ethan: Cool, see ya.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the start of the closing credits: Inspired by Dr. Oliver Sacks' true account of the experiences of Shirl and Barbara Jennings They are now married and living in Atlanta, Georgia Barbara continues to sculpt and although Shirl never regained his vision, he now paints pictures of his brief adventure in sight See more »

Connections

References Kung Fu (1972) See more »

Soundtracks

A Kiss to Build a Dream On
Written by Oscar Hammerstein II, Harry Ruby and Bert Kalmar
Performed by Louis Armstrong
Courtesy of GRP Records
Under license from Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

 
a good movie with revealing insights
18 January 1999 | by (Boardman, Ohio) – See all my reviews

At First Sight was a film with two stories to tell. The first was a love story and the second about a blind young man who has a chance to regain his sight. For some reason the two stories both separately compelling did not seem to mesh well--or as well as I expected. I'm not sure whether it was the writing or the directing or just me. With that said I thought the per- formances were outstanding. Ms. Sorvino, as the love interest, and Ms. McGillis, as the older sister who helped and cared for him were both good, but this was Mr. Kilmer's movie. He was EXCELLENT. He made me realize that a handicap is often more that of others than the supposedly handicapped. I suppose I knew this but Mr. Kilmer's performance brought it to conscio usness. He also portrayed well the confusion and bewilderment of entering what most people would consider the "normal" easy world of sightedness. I truly enjoyed the scenes where he displayed genuine innocence of adjusting to his new world. I don't want to be specific here. He showed great dimension to make me realize that sighted or not he was a complete person. There is much to be appreciated about this movie and everyone can learn from it. On the basis that this is a true and important story and Mr. Kilmer's performance---three plus stars.


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