A newly married couple discovers disturbing, ghostly images in photographs they develop after a tragic accident. Fearing the manifestations may be connected, they investigate and learn that some mysteries are better left unsolved.
The violinist Sydney Wells has been blind since she was five years old due to an accident. She submits to a surgery of cornea transplantation to recover her vision, and while recovering from the operation, she realizes that she's having strange visions. With the support of Dr. Paul Faulkner, Sidney finds who the donor of her eyes and begins a journey to find out the truth behind her visions.Written by
Genesis Rojas, Caracas, Venezuela.
At one point, Renée Zellweger was cast as the lead but had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts with Case 39 (2009). See more »
When Sydney is at the Chinese restaurant, the meat that the cook was cutting is alternating between more and less cut. See more »
Teen on Skateboard:
Oh, shit. Thanks. I didn't see that.
Neither did I.
[voice-over while Sydney walks in the street and settles in a café]
People say seeing is believing, but for me, that's not entirely true. I lost my sight when I was five years old. Those memories of what I have seen have faded so much that I doubt I'd even recognize myself anymore. Now I see using my other senses. I can smell the rain before it drops, but I can't watch it fall. I can feel the sun on my face, but I can't see it rise...
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The Eye (2008) I knew going into the theater that this would be a bit scary. OK, maybe traumatizing. I had a LASIK procedure done a couple of years ago, and although I wasn't blind beforehand, I did have pretty bad eyesight. I know a bit about the trepidation - perhaps even outright terror - one feels before undergoing an operation on one's eyeballs. I still get a little skeeved when I see a closeup of eyes, come to think of it.
Jessica Alba plays Sydney, a blind concert violinist who has a double corneal transplant, and of course things go wrong. Not with the surgery itself, but with the psychological aftermath - she sees dead people. And dead things. And undead. And so on; it looks like she's tapped into a spiritual world, or something. No one else can see what she's seeing, which is par for the course in movieland, but all of the demons and smoke and fire and other sfx seem extremely, utterly, real to Sydney.
Alba is excellent, showing that she has more than just two (or three) talents to show the world. Her Sydney is appealing in her vulnerability; Alba, a beautiful young woman, manages to make you feel as if her character could, indeed, live in your world: less glitzy starlet, more three-dimensional person. Of course, she's still a knockout, and she IS a supremely talented musician, and she DOES live in a super-posh apartment in a high rise, but still. Alba shows wonderful range, from tender to fragile, without giving up any sincerity. The movie hinges on her ability to sell the audience on her character's Everywoman (to a point) status, and I think she delivers.
Some of you may be thinking you've already seen this movie before, when it was called Blink. In Blink, Madeline Stowe played a young woman who lost her sight as a child (as did Sydney) and then grew up to be a talented violinist; after a new eye operation temporarily restores some sight, she sees things. Just like Sydney. Huh. Still, this isn't a redo of Blink, it's a remake of a Chinese film called Gin gwai. Asian films have made the rounds of Hollywood in recent years (The Ring, The Grudge, Dark Water), and although the remakes usually don't have the subversive bite of their original counterparts, some of them hold up rather well when inundated with high-tech CGI. The Eye does use special effects, but it uses them - pardon me - to great effect; you're not overwhelmed with attention-grabbing CGI.
The biggest debit in the movie is the love interest, Sydney's doctor, Paul (Alessandro Nivola), who seems dull and unimportant, although his believing in and trusting Sydney is a linchpin for moving the plot. He just seems vacant and stiff, hardly a commendation of Nivola's acting abilities. (Think of a younger Dylan McDermott.) On the other hand, a good counterbalance to Nivola is Parker Posey as Sydney's concerned sister, who, although she doesn't immediately buy into Sydney's rantings, does empathize and attempt to understand a bit better than the hunky doctor.
Overall, The Eye is a tense, shudder-filled movie that manages to dress up a recycled plot with dead-on performances and evocative cinematography.
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