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Blindness [DVD] [2008]

34 customer reviews

Price: £5.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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£5.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details Only 3 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Product details

  • Actors: Julianne Moore, Gael Garcia Bernal, Mark Ruffalo, Danny Glover, Alice Braga
  • Directors: Fernando Meirelles
  • Format: PAL
  • Audio Description: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 30 Mar. 2009
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001PTHW9C
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 28,975 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Fernando Meirelles directs this thriller based on the novel by Portuguese author Jose Saramago. In an unnamed city an epidemic of 'white sickness' sweeps the population, causing sufferers to turn instantaneously blind. Ordinary citizens find themselves lost in the middle of busy streets, forced to rely on the goodwill of strangers - which, it turns out, is in short supply as criminals take advantage of the sightless, seizing the food rations proffered by the government and demanding payment in valuable or sexual favours. Julianne Moore plays a doctor's wife whose sight is unaffected by the plague. Following her afflicted husband into quarantine, she keeps her sight a secret, and manages to guide a group of seven strangers out onto the ravaged streets of the city, where the trappings of civilisation have all but disappeared. Their voyage is a dangerous one, and the group's survival ultimately depends on simple human acts of kindness and empathy.

Customer Reviews

3.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Fantasy Lore on 26 July 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
From the moment this movie began to the final (ambiguous) scene, I was completely glued to my screen and gripped by the compelling narrative. I found the acting consistently excellent, the direction elegant & evocative and the whole experience surprisingly rewarding. There wasn't a moment when I felt the story might be descending into an arty, pompous, empty vehicle for snobbish actors; as many of the reviews & critical comments I'd read in the press had led me to believe might prove to be true.

It's been quite a while since I felt I could award five stars to a film without any hesitation, but `Blindness' was without doubt such a rare experience for me. As another reviewer has noted- this film is essentially an exploration of human nature and what impressed me most about the plot is that there's only one contrivance; which is the treatment of the afflicted by those who have yet to loose their sight. But as unlikely as I found the concept that the government would imprison victims of a mystery illness without access to medical treatment, limited food, no surveillance and no rule of law other than that which they implement themselves; the fascinating human interplay on display here more than compensated for that single clunky plot point. And, of course, this is absolutely essential to the plot; in order that the blind can be contained in a veritable human petri dish for the audience's pleasure and so for me was something that could easily be forgiven. Quite often with these types of movies where society descends into chaos allowing a microscopic examination of the human condition- the audience is forced to swallow a number of unlikely scenarios, but in my opinion the events in `Blindness' align eerily with how I suspect many of us might behave under the same conditions.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Rwj Nixon on 26 July 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
There have been many books and films about the end of the world, but few have detailed the end of the world in such a slow meticulous way as this particularly grim offering from City of God and the Constant Gardener director Fernando Meirelles.
In an unnamed city in an unnamed country, a man stopped at traffic lights in his car suddenly goes blind, but is not plunged into darkness, rather he is blinded by a bright white light, rather like as he describes it "being bathed in a sea of milk". The man seeks help for his condition from a doctor (Mark Ruffalo), but soon the blindness spreads as everyone who comes into contact with Patient Zero is struck down as well, including the doctor. As the blindness spreads like an epidemic, the authorities panic, and the infected are quarantined in a hospital, where they are left to pretty much fend for themselves, whilst outside the hospitals doors trigger happy and nervous soldiers make sure no one leaves. As the wards of the hospital become overcrowded food becomes scarce and the society within the hospital begins to break down. However, on one ward there is a patient with a secret. The doctor has been accompanied into the hospital by his wife (Julianne Moore), and she is simply faking her blindness in order to stay with her husband, and it is this woman who will lead a small group of those afflicted to safety.
Utilising the hospital as a microcosm of the larger society outside its walls, it details in stark terms the break down and eventual collapse of the fragile society within the hospital, bringing to the fore in some the worst aspects of human nature. The hospital soon falls into disrepair and chaos, and within this nightmarish establishment a small group, led by the doctor, attempts to hold on to the last aspects of civilization.
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Format: DVD
This film is based on the excellent 1995 novel by Nobel-laureate Portuguese writer José Saramago (Blindness or the original Ensaio Sobre a Cegueira, Portuguese Edition). Brazilian director Meirelles (City of God and The Constant Gardener) successfully conveyed Saramago's literature work to the screen, honoring the title of cinema as the seventh art and demonstrating again his creativity and competence as a movie director. As usual, good cinema is almost always not a commercial success, and this explains the harsh criticism by some movie critics and the disappointment of many movie goers.

As a quick warning, if you dislike odd movies with shocking content but with quite a philosophical message, such as Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange, then do not waste your time and money buying/watching this movie. But if decide to you give it a try, please, do not expect a logical explanation for such a rare event as to all people but one going blind in an unnamed city, with characters with no name. It doesn't matter, and it is completely irrelevant for the message Saramago indented. This is a story that lets you think and reflect on human values and our true nature, in a modern society that is more worry about money and so many superfluous things.
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