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Blindness (2008)

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A city is ravaged by an epidemic of instant white blindness.

Director:

Fernando Meirelles

Writers:

José Saramago (novel), Don McKellar (screenplay)
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Popularity
4,498 ( 604)
15 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Yûsuke Iseya ... First Blind Man
Jason Bermingham Jason Bermingham ... Driver #1
Eduardo Semerjian Eduardo Semerjian ... Concerned Pedestrian #1
Don McKellar ... Thief
Ciça Meirelles Ciça Meirelles ... Driver #2
Antônio Fragoso Antônio Fragoso ... Concerned Pedestrian #2
Lilian Blanc Lilian Blanc ... Concerned Pedestrian #3
Douglas Silva ... Onlooker #1
Daniel Zettel Daniel Zettel ... Onlooker #2
Yoshino Kimura ... First Blind Man's Wife
Joe Pingue ... Taxi Driver
Susan Coyne Susan Coyne ... Receptionist
Fabiana Gugli ... Mother of the Boy
Mitchell Nye Mitchell Nye ... Boy
Danny Glover ... Man with Black Eye Patch
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Storyline

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

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Faith is blind. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence including sexual assaults, language and sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

Brazil | Canada | Japan | UK | Italy

Language:

English | Japanese

Release Date:

3 October 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Blindness See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,950,260, 5 October 2008

Gross USA:

$3,351,751

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$19,844,979
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo played lovers in The Kids Are All Right (2010). See more »

Goofs

When the Doctor's wife is boiling water, there should not be any sound, because the kettle does not have a whistle cap on it. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
First Blind Man: I'm blind.
See more »

Connections

References Repulsion (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

The Hexagrams
Written by Marco Antônio Guimarães
(c) 1993 Uakti Music - Used by Permission
Performed by Marco Antônio Guimarães (as Uakti)
Provided courtesy of Decca Label Group
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
An eye for an eye, and soon the whole world is blind
25 December 2008 | by pmdawnSee all my reviews

It's very easy to understand why people hate this movie.

Blindness is directed by acclaimed film-maker Fernando Meirelles, with a story based on a novel by award-winning writer Jose Saramago. It stars Julianne Moore and Gael Garcia Bernal. What could go wrong?

Well, this is one the most depressing movies I've seen in recent years.

Don't be fooled, the genre of this movie is Horror, albeit done in an ultra-realistic way, much like the Brazilian movie wave of the 70/80's - gritty, violent, dirty, and ultimately hopeless.

However it's not a horror movie in the common sense. It's not scary because it has ugly monsters. It's not frightening because there is a lot of gore and blood. What freaks me (and others) out over this movie, is that it tells a story that could happen, and actually, is happening. If one can't see that, then one is as blind as the characters in the film.

The movie is technically brilliant, with great acting and top-notch effects. The story takes place in a non-specific city, but some of it was clearly filmed in São Paulo. The movie poses the question, "what if suddenly everyone in the world became blind"? This is a practical question as much as a metaphorical one.

I don't think this movie can be "enjoyed". The violence is suggested rather than seen (which IMHO makes it scarier). It can, however, be appreciated, as its shocking nature is nothing more than a wake-up call for humanity.

Having said that, Meirelles took a huge risk (the novel was considered to be un-filmable) with this film, and the result was a lynch-mob reaction from both critics and audiences. I wonder how this will impact Meirelles' future works.

I will dare to suggest that, if this had been filmed in Spanish or Portuguese, it might have been hailed as a cult movie. As it is, it's too alienating for audiences that are used to happy endings and fake-violence, or people who watch movies solely to pass the time.

This one is for 'hardcore' movie fans - don't watch it if you're depressed or sad. And it offers the viewers very little in the way of comfort. However, it's so well-executed and disturbing, that you can't help but agree that their goal was reached. Unfortunately, the marketing and the names involved with 'Blindness' misled many viewers who otherwise would never dream of watching this.

It's not a perfect film by any means, though. The music (specially in one crucial scene) just feels out of place sometimes. And If you can't picture yourself as a blind person, some things may not make a lot of sense, too. There is a scene however in which one of the characters sings a very popular song in a slightly different way - one you are not likely to forget anytime soon.

Approach with caution, and preferrably, alone. You don't want to lose any friends or potential dates. But I also think that to miss out on this movie is like losing a chance to watch one of the most thought-provoking films of this year.

7/10


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