A city is ravaged by an epidemic of instant "white blindness". Those first afflicted are quarantined by the authorities in an abandoned mental hospital where the newly created "society of ... See full summary »
Five maids in São Paulo are observed in this episodic, impressionistic film. The women interact with each other, ride busses, work, and have longings: Rai for a husband, Créo for her lost ... See full summary »
Nuno is a man working at a hot dog stand, who also invented a machine which promises to revolutionize the shoe industry- a foot scanner. In the middle of a gasoline embargo and finding ... See full summary »
An inexplicable crack in the Pyrenees Mountains provokes excitement and scientific curiosity. As the geological fracture deepens and widens, the European community begins to disassociate ... See full summary »
A blind Asian-American woman lives with her son and daughter-in-law. The two women barely tolerate one another and the son, a doctor simply turns himself off to avoid any confrontation with... See full summary »
A city is ravaged by an epidemic of instant "white blindness". Those first afflicted are quarantined by the authorities in an abandoned mental hospital where the newly created "society of the blind" quickly breaks down. Criminals and the physically powerful prey upon the weak, hoarding the meager food rations and committing horrific acts. There is, however, one eyewitness to the nightmare. A woman whose sight is unaffected by the plague follows her afflicted husband to quarantine. There, keeping her sight a secret, she guides seven strangers who have become, in essence, a family. She leads them out of quarantine and onto the ravaged streets of the city, which has seen all vestiges of civilization crumble. Written by
Festival de Cannes' Editor
Producer Niv Fichman became interested in the project back in 1999 when he and Don McKellar, who would write the script, flew to the Canary Islands to talk to the Nobel Prize-winning Portuguese author José Saramago about giving them the film rights to his book. One of Saramago's conditions was that the film must not be set in any recognizable countries. See more »
The pistol used in the movie appears to be a snub-nosed revolver, typically holding between 5 to 10 bullets. The number of rounds fired off without any indication of reloading is closer to 15 throughout the "Ward 3" standoff. See more »
Sometimes I wonder. At times, it seems that we all have some shared cinematic values that some art can reach us all. Sure, we usually sacrifice depth in the process, but that's a small enough occasional price for the joy of laughing with a crowd. It is no small part of the experience, that shared dark room with no remote control.
So when I see a movie like this, I wonder why it doesn't fit the niche. It is extraordinarily well done. The eye is used to convey not only narrative movement as usually is desired but situated group emotion as well. It does this in a straightforward, effective way. It is high cinema, but not requiring deciphering. Some visual episodes here simply took my breath away. They worked, all of them that I got, because Julianne understood what they were and how to support them.
The story has allegorical elements about society and family, humanness and knowing. I would have preferred that they be more subtle, more Chinese. But they worked. You could see the balance, the perfect weighing of values, the texture from a Nobel-level writer.
So this should have been embraced by everyone. High visual art with accessible vocabulary and visceral effect. Obvious allegory, but with rich immediate motion. Several unexpected turns. But for some reason it wasn't. As I knew this going in, it became a sort of parallel context that was carried along. This was absolutely pummeled by the newspaper writers, not critics really; just reporters of a supposed banal zeitgeist.
Viewers on IMDb were not so savage, but this, like "Children of Men" did not get the exposure it deserved. The business about goodness grown from being forced to live on the periphery of dangerous tribe simply did not carry from "City of God" to here, though the similarities are striking.
So I wonder whether it is me that is blind here, in celebrating this, or the other way.
Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.
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