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Blindness

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Blindness (2008)

When a sudden plague of blindness devastates a city, a small group of the afflicted band together to triumphantly overcome the horrific conditions of their imposed quarantine.

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Rating : 6.6
Studio : Rhombus Media,  O2 Filmes,  Téléfilm Canada, 
Crew : Art Direction,  Production Design, 
Cast : Mark Ruffalo Julianne Moore Gael García Bernal Danny Glover Alice Braga
Genre : Drama Thriller Science Fiction

Cast

Also starring Mark Ruffalo

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Reviews

L.A. Weekly
2018/03/09

As a calling card for the stylistic talents of a new filmmaker, writer-director Anna Chi s first feature is a success. As drama, it s a dud.

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Kevin Thomas
2018/03/09

A glum, stale soap opera.

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tinoid
2014/02/11

Close the blinds ...---Okay.. I signed up too .. just to make sure I will cancel out one of the people who voted a 10 for this lukewarm wet towel .I have to admit I have an ulterior motive. When I feel depressed I read hate reviews on IMDb and it makes me feel better straight away .. I can't stop laughing. So I should sincerely thank the director for his herculean efforts to make a movie this bad .. a genuine antidepressant while my prescription pills remain safely on a shelf collecting dust .. but let's get back on topic *SERIOUS SPOILER ALERT* We are left to witness a bunch of people who have mysteriously gone blind and have been dumped in an old mental asylum being terrorized by one of them who happens to have a gun (note that he is blind too .. how would he know where to aim ?) What can I add to the perceptive observations of other people who did not buy into this movie ? I'm profoundly grateful I didn't pay to see it .. but let me throw a few wet towels in the shower .. The Japanese woman begging to get raped .. The part where the fat guy thanks the raped women for a good time, hears one of them died from being a "dead fish" but then we find out that the raping is still in progress .. Who are the women we see in action ? as it seems the 9 female volunteers have already returned and are mourning the dead sister .. and I was disgusted by Julianne's spineless husband who not only turns 2 blind eyes to his wife being raped but makes things worse by making out with a blind hooker and protests when his wife finally kills the bad guy to save the day and it appears the crook did not sleep .. 2 days of non stop sexual performance .. any professional male porn star would envy that. To summarize, My jaw dropped, and I could not retrieve it .. if you still want to see this brain hazard and ignore all warnings .. at least make sure you are visually impaired (perhaps with a wet towel),your kids are sound asleep and close the blinds

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DJRMewzique
2012/01/11

Excuse the pun, but not worth seeing.---Honestly, I am not even sure if there is any better way to properly articulate what this film is except with the use of the word "Crap." In what seems like a cool premise at first, people being stricken with sudden blindness, what this movie becomes is an incredibly tedious joke of a film on every level. The blind soon get quarantined together and within the quarantine, they separate into different wards...and soon, the wards start to feud, one using food as leverage. Yes, large groups of blind people. Feuding. What's easier than infiltrating a group of blind people? Not much.Every aspect of the storyline from the moment they enter the ward is completely idiotic and you will find yourself begging for the credits to roll....or for you yourself to go blind.Of course, there is one who is immune to the blindness, and that is the usually awesome Julianne Moore in a role that will forever remain a huge embarrassment on her resume. Even with one person who can see, a war between the blind leading the blind ensues as the viewer watches, wondering when the guy from Candid Camera will jump out."Blindness"...don't see it.

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Imdbidia
2011/02/22

Disappointing if you have read the book---An adaptation of the allegorical eponymous novel by Jose Saramago. It tells the story of a group of people who are confined in an old abandoned asylum by the Government after the spread of a global pandemic of a strange contagious white blindness.The movie follows well the book story, but completely forgets the human and social critique, and the philosophical and political questions embedded in it. In fact, the original title of the book is Essay on Blindness, and it is part of a series of philosophical-literary essays on different themes related to humanity, social and political structures. In other words, the soul and insight of the book are lost in translation.The book is confronting, shocking and much harder and darker than the movie. The movie is a succession of weird shocking events that have no point, a confrontation between good and evil in an apocalyptic world... Wrong and simplistic. This is so because the scriptwriter and the director missed the most important elements of the book, or, simply, thought that the viewer would not want or understand more complexity.Part of my disappointment has to do with the acting. Most of the actors are uninspired and badly directed, and some of them miscast. I did not believe them at all in their roles, especially Ruffalo and Moore, who seem not to believe the roles they are playing or the circumstances in which they are placed. I found stereotypical and offensive the use a Hispanic -played by Gael Garcia Bernal- as the bad guy; I mean, that's typical of mainstream stupid Hollywood movies, and it was not in Saramago's book.It is great that we can experience the white textured involving blindness that the characters suffer, which is beautifully portrayed in the movie. However, there is too much clarity and whiteness in the movie, which is overwhelmingly white and on-purpose blinding, so we, the viewers, become a little blind too. I did not thing that was necessary. I think the director could have shown the white blindness from the point of view of the people getting blind, so the viewer can imagine what it is like, and then make the movie darker and moodier. The viewer is going to watch the movie, but cannot be part of it.Miralles shows his savoir-faire in some of the most difficult scenes, the ones involving the women going to ward 3, shot with great sensitivity (they are raw and disturbing in the book), more suggesting than showing, creating and atmosphere that shows the drama but not the raw facts. It works perfectly. I also found great the depiction of the desolated city, the chaos and dirtiness the city -unnamed- is reduced to, and the life of the gangs of blind people and dogs in the streets. The music is beautiful -a mix of ethereal, quirky, strange and delicate elements- and serves the story very well. To add another positive element, Saramago's book is not easy to read, among other things, because of his literary style, so the movie is an easier approach to the story and it is still interesting.Saramago, who never agreed to sell the rights of any of his books to any film producer, did so in this case and after a long negotiation. Miralles directed the movie always having Saramago in mind, and what he would think about his cinematographic options while adapting the novel. Saramago attended, side by side with Miralles, the premier of the movie. A video in Youtube (watch?v=7XzBkM_LdAk), shows the end of the movie, in which Saramago is visibly moved, and says that he feels as happy at watching the movie as he did when he finished his book. Well, as a reader, I can't disagree more.The movie has bad reviews in general and, in this case, I think they are deserved. To me, is the lack of depth and soul, the mediocre acting and the poor direction in major subjects ruins the interesting premises and storyline. Not all viewers are morons, and it is up to the director to direct and edit the movie, and lead the actors to the point in which they become the characters they are playing. Don't expect the viewer to fill the gaps and inconsistencies of any movie and make an essay on blindness from a bunch of apocalyptic events.

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Free_Jafa
2010/07/31

Snatches Defeat from the Jaws of Victory---This movie is sheer disappointment. It takes a brilliant concept and ruins it with unrealistic idiocy. If this film had been bad since the beginning, like if it had bad acting or a lame premise there would be no problem. Alas, such was not the case. It gets your hopes up only to dash them.Let me just say, I'm no stranger to horror on film. Be it from slasher movies, exploitation films, or real life documentaries, I have a strong stomach. An upset stomach was not the problem here. My issues with this film were not its 'gritty realism', but it's gritty lack of reality. It goes out of its way to make a situation seem horrifying, which is fine except for when that situation has a blatantly obvious solution.Without giving anything away in the story, let me put it this way. Imagine there is a mass murdering rapist on the loose, and you alone have the power to stop him. Now imagine that all you have to do to stop this murderer is press a button. Wouldn't you press the button? Probably, and if someone made a movie about your courageous button pushing they wouldn't have you wait until all these horrible things kept happening again and again after you knew you could stop it.In summary, I gave this movie one star for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. They had something really great going and they ruined it. They just flat out ruined it.Do not watch this movie unless you like being disappointed and insulted.

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EyeDunno
2009/12/29

Not your typical Studio film. Mild spoilers only.---Anyone who embraces the Hollywood mentality shouldn't watch this film. The review posted by Guynaba ("Opens your eyes for something you don't want to see," 15 August 2009), I feel, hit the nail on the head several times. When I started watching this film, it dawned on me that it was not at all directed via Hollywood, or produced by the cookie-cutter types (a la Bruckheimer). I enjoyed the cinematography and I'm a visual person, having done documentary photography. The DP creates scenes that someone with knowledge of film-making and creative vision understands. The style is very very sensitive on subjects that make people squirm... and the cast and crew take you through the feces literally and figuratively. I wanted to turn it off so badly. I felt uncomfortable as the film went to places that 99% of filmmakers can't or won't go. Finally, someone had the guts. Why? Because people who are faced with such questions as survival must face some of the roughest and evil things as to something that we all truly take for granted, such as, where we will get our next meal. There are vague references to what happens below, but I wouldn't call them spoilers. Others like "Iluvfriends" (Dec 13 2009) will tell people to avoid the film. The label "Blindness" as "crap," justifying it with the inclusion of what they call "rape" scenes which ARE awful. My fiancée and I were shocked as the scenes continued ruthlessly. The odd thing was, wasn't it actually consensual? The men didn't go to the women, they made a proposition and the women voted one by one to go to Ward 3 after accepting the terms that the people of the ward set. I suggest that those who can't deal with this shouldn't see it. At first, I was confused about the presence of a weapon. Thinking it through, the people who were quarantined there were never searched (such as the doctor and his wife when they were taken to the center). I didn't quite embrace the reaction to the wife finding her husband with someone else. Yet Julianne Moore's reaction to infidelity was something I chose to hesitantly accept. At that stage everyone was faced with something more sinister than being unfaithful. There was clearly input from those in the the field of relationships to offer feedback on how a spouse might react. I challenge people who love a good independent film, who actually can look at life from all angles instead of through one or two sides, to watch without turning it off. If you enjoy the craft of skillful cinematography, if you look for features that buck the trend of USA studio film-making - where the good people win, the bad ones lose, the end is always spelled out for you, and all's right with the world - watch it and ask yourself: what might *you* do if faced with situations like this? People have faced such horrors (and far worse than the movie depicts). I spent two weeks covering Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. The settings and situations took me back there (albeit without the stench, that will never escape my mind), especially in the conditions I faced in the Superdome and the Convention Center. I would like to have given this 10 stars but it's simply not perfect.

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Radu_A
2009/11/15

'Lord of the Flies' with adults: much more than it seems to be---One of the few outstanding pictures of late, 'Blindness' is hard to watch, hard to stomach and hard to deal with. As other comments mention, this movie leaves you somewhat disgusted at being human, because the consequences of a non-explained epidemic of white blindness appear extremely realistic.It's also perfectly understandable that some people hate this movie, as it definitely vilifies everybody affected to a certain extent, the only exception being the still-seeing heroine. However in the profit-driven film industry, which so frequently torments our brains with just too much triviality, such a well-paced, provocative, thought-inspiring piece should be appreciated more for its dare than criticized for its shortcomings.If you don't want to learn too much about the plot, read no further. I give a concise summary because some of you may want to know why this film is so controversial.An unnamed city (though easily recognizable as Toronto). A busy traffic intersection. A Japanese man suddenly turns blind. Unnerved drivers honking need to be appeased by a passersby. Another one offers to give the Japanese man a lift home. Once there, he makes off with his car. The Japanese man waits for his wife, who then takes him to an optician. The optician cannot establish his condition and refers him to a hospital. The optician heads home, has dinner with his wife (absolutely brilliant: Julianne Moore), and wakes up next morning to find that he has lost his sight as well. So has the car thief and various other patients of his clinic. It becomes apparent that the blindness is an epidemic. The optician is being transported to an isolation facility, accompanied by his wife who pretends to have turned blind as well. Once there, they try to set up a code of behavior for the ever-increasing numbers of arrivals, since they are completely left to their own devices, with no direct contact to the outside world. The facility is guarded by trigger-happy soldiers who offer no assistance whatsoever and resort to violence in order to keep the affected indoors. Among them, power struggles ensue. With limited food supplies, a group of crooks takes control of them and coerce the others to exchange their valuables, and then their women for food. Their means of authority are a gun and the instincts of a blind accountant (chilling: Maury Chaykin). After one of the women dies of abuse, the optician's wife kills the leader of the crooks (effectively ruthless: Gael Garcia Bernal). A revolt ensues, during which the building catches fire. The wife dares to ask the guards for help and finds the facility deserted. She takes a small group of the liberated blind across a collapsed Toronto, eventually making it home. A joyful dinner with what has become her family of sorts follows. Next morning the Japanese man, who was the first one affected and is still among them, can see once more, to the joy of everyone except a naturally blind man who had hoped to go on living with everybody (wonderful: Danny Glover). The optician's wife walks out on the terrace and looks up to the white sky - has she now lost her sight, as it returns to the others? The criticism this story attracts from naturally blind people may stem from the accomplice of the villains. Of all the bad guys, he appears to be the worst because he knows exactly how vulnerable and extorted the affected victims feel. He jumps at the chance to wield authority for once instead of feeling compassion. However, this doesn't seem unrealistic and isn't presented in a discriminatory way.The meaning of the white blindness appears to be some religious castigation in the novel, though this isn't pointed out explicitly. What makes this movie so fantastic in my opinion is that no explanation is offered at all. It's all about how people react upon a common affliction, and the chain of degradation that ensues is so logical that I am hard-pressed to remember any other dystopian film with such a clear message.And then there is Julianne Moore, who makes her screen persona absolutely unforgettable - both angelic and vulnerable, both forgiving and vengeful, and always credible, even though it is such a mystery why she is the only one not affected by the disease.In conclusion: this is one of those rare movies that give you a lot more than you might have wished for.

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tedg
2009/10/03

Tosca---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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guynaba
2009/08/15

Opens your eyes for something you don't want to see---The movie has its merits. It brings you into the story, making you feel all the emotions felt by the characters, and in my opinion this is why some people didn't like it; it opens your eyes for things that nobody wants to see. I'm not saying that a disease like this one could happen, but others may come, and that's a reality.The movie makes you feel extremely uncomfortable; I caught myself thinking about leaving the room sometimes. The atmosphere that Fernando Meireles built is so heavy and dark (even thought the whole movie is full of bright colors) that it makes you feel something like depression, sadness, and you keep thinking in the movie after it has finished. The acting helped a lot in this aspect; all the actors did their best to give a perfect sense of reality.If you want just to spend some time watching a good apocalyptic movie, this is not the one. It may be considered as "cult" in someway, by the fact that you don't watch it to get entertained, but to reflect about it.If I had to grade this movie based on how I felt during it, I would give it a 0, but I have to say that, above everything, it is a great movie.8/10

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