Customer Review

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent enough, but ultimately feels like a lesser Children of Men., 24 July 2009
This review is from: Blindness [DVD] [2008] (DVD)
On release, Blindness was branded "the new Children of Men", even comparisons were drawn to I Am Legend. Even though it has actresses from both (Julianne Moore and Alice Braga) it is not as good as either, hell, it shouldn't even be mentioned in the same breath as Alfonso Cuarón's exceptional Children of Men.

However, that doesn't mean not to check out Blindness as it is a decent enough drama with some solid performances. The film opens very intriguingly, an Asian man in an unnamed city goes blind at the wheel, this is only the start of the epidemic and traffic chaos has already started around him. Obviously then director Fernando Meirelles' view of the worlds morality in this film is shown as a man appears to help him, only to kick him out of his own car and drive away.

Perhaps this is where the main fault lies, the film tries so hard to hammer home a message that society has lost sight, using literal blindness as a metaphor for all that is bad in human thought and action. No wonder various foundations have protested against the film! It might have been more wise to let the viewers decide for themselves how this city would react and keep things more ambiguous. People going blind doesn't necessarily mean they will become selfish, indifferent and aggressive yet overall the film puts this point across. An example is the doctor played by Mark Ruffalo, he completely changes and even in the middle of the crisis he cheats on his wife.

I think what saves Blindess overall though, and the reasons for me giving it 3 stars is that it is well structured and paced and looks visually stunning, it is supposed to be set in an unidentified city and there are no clues at all to where it is filmed which is good and adds to the experience. The ruined and deserted city caused by the aftermath is also terrifically done.

The performances are definitely worth a mention, Julianne Moore is an excellent emotional core as one of the few humans immune to the blindness and carries the film. I also liked Alice Braga, Yuseke Iseya and Gael García Bernal who has fun as one of the quarantined victims who tries to take over the wards for everything they have to achieve personal profit. However, I was disapointed with Mark Ruffalo who is normally a fine actor (see Collateral and Zodiac) but he struggles in this and fails to make an impact. Danny Glover isn't great either and his clunky voice-overs don't help things.

You will enjoy this film more if you can see past the over emphasised moral message and plot-holes, It would take too long to go through them all but for example: everyone's blind yet not once does anyone call each other by name, it would surely help the situation! I can't understand what Meirelles was trying to achieve with the non-use of names for the characters.

To sum up, Blindness is a not bad drama that is worth seeing for the visuals and performances. However, if you want something similar and in my view much better, catch Children of Men.
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