|Index||3 reviews in total|
This is another splendid episode in Brian Clemens's "Thriller" anthology.
The story centres around a group of assassins taking over a school for the
blind to give them a good vantage point to launch an attempt on the life of
a visiting statesman. When the only sighted member of staff is murdered by
one of the assassins, the blind students have to find a way to disarm the
killers, against all the odds ...
Not for the first time Clemens uses blindness as a theme to create great tension, suspense and toil against apparent impotence. The viewer has to guess how the students can succeed. The fear factor isn't actually as high as in other stories but the tale is very engaging and typically played and directed to a great level. Sinead Cusack is marvellously engaging as Sally, one of the students. The scene in which she obliviously "looks" through a window as her teacher is shot dead is incredibly memorable. Peter Vaughn is, as always, superb in a sinister role as one of the assassins. The episode also provides an early sighting of Dennis Waterman, just before his big breakthrough in "The Sweeney".
Another clever theme is the squabbling between two of the killers, and intriguingly the motives for their mission are never made clear.
The only real gripes are the conclusion, which is adequate but not wholly effective, and some very wooden radio and TV reports on the statesman's visit. However this is still a very fine effort, should you be lucky enough to be able to see it.
'The Eyes Have It' is probably the joint highpoint of Thriller's first
series - the other being 'The Colour Of Blood'. It is one of the most
memorable episodes and will remain in your mind long after the closing
credits. It was the first episode of Thriller I saw - as a repeat back
in the early 1980s and it made a huge impression on my 9 year old mind.
The premise is simple but devastating in its execution. A band of three terrorists take refuge in a school for the blind where they have identified an ideal vantage point from which to assassinate a visiting head of state. To gain access they are forced to murder the head of the school and in a particularly vivid scene, this dastardly act occurs in full view of Sally (expertly played by Sinead Cusack). Gradually she realises that something is amiss and has difficulty in convincing her fellow students that they may in danger. However they find that their pooled resources can be quite effective despite their handicap and the action moves towards an unforgettable and dramatic climax.
The assassins are convincing - particularly the menacing Peter Vaughan as Anderson. Doubtless many viewers will remember him as the aggressive jewellery fence who ridicules a young thief's honesty in the McVities Fruit Goldgrain advertisements of the mid 1970s. 'Nick 'em? I bought 'em' 'He bought 'em!!!'
Well done to Shaun O'Riordan for some great directing - 'The Eyes Have It' is an outstanding episode and deserves to be seen by everyone.
A series that can beat nearly anything currently on US television. I would rate it as good as the best modern series around, such as Prison Break and 24, and better than Lost in my opinion. Taken in the context of the time, 1973-76, this UK television series still has an edge over same time US series. This particular episode left me wondering why American TV and Film productions cannot develop stories that have such great potential in the plot AND actually live up to it? There is enough tension and turns here to make the most jaded viewer take notice. When was the last time a slow-paced and languid story still left you on seat's edge? That takes a GOOD PLOT, SUPERB ACTING, WELL-DONE DIRECTION AND EDITING! Things sorely lacking in modern thrillers that rely upon sudden shock, loud noise and music, and grisly gore effects to terrify an audience. In those you can find time to go to the restroom and not miss anything or care, in this thriller, you will not want to leave at all. Do yourself a favor and pick up the DVD of the complete series available from UK sellers on ebay and other places, and give your Hitchcock series and Twilight Zone tapes a rest, for this is the equal to them.
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