The Eye (2008 film)

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The Eye
Realistic drawing of a brown eye, with four fingers grabbing the bottom lid from inside.
Promotional poster
Directed by David Moreau
Xavier Palud
Produced by Don Granger
Michelle Manning
Paula Wagner
Screenplay by Sebastian Gutierrez
Based on The Eye (Jian gui) 
by The Pang Brothers and
Jo Jo Yuet-chun Hui
Starring Jessica Alba
Parker Posey
Alessandro Nivola
Music by Marco Beltrami
Cinematography Jeffrey Jur
Editing by Patrick Lussier
Studio Cruise/Wagner Productions
Vertigo Entertainment
Distributed by Lionsgate
Paramount Vantage
Release dates
  • February 1, 2008 (2008-02-01)
Running time 98 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $12 million[1]
Box office $56,964,642[2]

The Eye is a 2008 supernatural horror film starring Jessica Alba. It is a remake of the Pang Brothers' 2002 film of the same name.

Plot[edit]

Sydney Wells (Jessica Alba) is a successful classical violinist who has been blind since the age of five. Fifteen years later, Sydney undergoes a cornea transplant, which causes her eyesight to return, a bit blurry at first. As time goes on, Sydney's vision begins to clear; however, she also begins experiencing terrifying visions, mostly of fire and of people dying. The bulk of the rest of the film concerns Sydney unraveling the mystery of the visions, and trying to convince others, primarily her visual therapist, Paul Faulkner (Alessandro Nivola), who becomes a helpmate in her quest. She knows that she is not going insane.

She finds herself in Mexico, where the cornea donor was originally from. The images of fire and death are the result of an industrial accident that the donor foretold. The donor hanged herself because she could not stop the accident from occurring. Sydney puts the spirit to rest, and begins her trek home. As Sydney and Paul wait in a queue of vehicles to cross the border, a high speed police chase ends with the fugitive crashing through the border barriers and into a tanker full of gasoline.

Sydney, able to still see the death silhouettes, begins to try to get everyone she can off the highway. The tanker explodes from a spark in the getaway car's engine, and Sydney is blinded by flying glass. After recovering at a hospital, she returns to her life as a blind violinist, though with a more optimistic "view" of her condition.

Themes[edit]

Using the pretext of a psychological thriller and paranormal experiences, the film explores mental illnesses such as the monothematic delusion known as mirrored-self misidentification.

Other themes include the concept of precognition, or premonition, perhaps becoming a popular cultural crossover from Asian beliefs about the unknown – since this film was a remake of a Hong Kong horror flick, and still retains Asian themes in the 2008 version.

Production[edit]

Remake rights to the Pang brothers' original 2002 Hong Kong film, The Eye, were purchased by Cruise/Wagner Productions.

The band Blaqk Audio provided instrumental versions of the songs, "Between Breaths" and "The Love Letter" that were used in trailers and on the official website for the 2008 film. In response to the buzz it created, Jade Puget of the electronic duo suggested a possible public release of all the CexCells songs in instrumental form.

Alba spent much time with the blind soprano Jessica Bachicha to learn about how blind people lived, used the white cane, read Braille, etc.

A similar movie was planned by Alfred Hitchcock many years ago, as referenced in Patrick McGilligan's Biography, Alfred Hitchcock: A Life in Darkness and Light (as well as others). The movie was about a blind pianist and Alfred Hitchcock had hoped to get James Stewart to play the part. The pianist undergoes a breakthrough eye transplant surgery and sees images and things that the donor once saw, including a murder.

This American remake follows Naina, a Hindi movie released in 2005, that is also based on the Pang Brothers' film.[citation needed]

Filming[edit]

The filming was done primarily in Albuquerque, NM and the surrounding areas. Sets were created using much of the downtown metro area, Sydneys apartment was built on a sound stage and was also filmed in Albuquerque. Exteriors were shot look like the Downtown Los Angeles area. The establishing hospital shots – wherein Sydney is supposed to have had her sight-restoring surgery – are of LAC/USC Medical Center in the Boyle Heights district; 3/4 shots looking north- and southeast of the main 18-floor-high central building (the same building used for the television soap-opera General Hospital). Fictionally, the burned-out Chinese restaurant is supposed to be located just three-blocks from where Sydney lives; the exterior scene, in which Sydney is about to get into a taxicab and travel to Mexico, was filmed on 7th Street, just east of Figueroa, in the downtown area. Shots of Dr. Faulkner's office building are of the Forestry building at the University of British Columbia (UBC). Several other scenes, including outdoor shots, were shot in Albuquerque, New Mexico.[3]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

The film received generally negative reviews from critics, many considering it inferior to the original. On the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, 22% of critics gave the film a positive review, based on 75 reviews.[4]

Jessica Alba was nominated for a Razzie Award for Worst Actress. But was also nominated for Favorite Female Leading Lady at the People's Choice Awards the same year as the movie and won Choice Movie Actress: Horror/Thriller at the Kids' Choice Awards for her performance in the film. Thus proving there was some good acceptance of Jessica Alba's performance. Including a review from Fred Topel from Can Magazine saying "It's Jessica Alba's best performance".[5]

Box office[edit]

The film opened in second place at the U.S box office with $12.4 million.[2] As of August 10, 2011, the film has a domestic gross of $31,418,697 with a foreign gross of $25,545,945 totaling an international gross of $56,964,642. In the United Kingdom, it grossed $1,398,958 in its opening weekend at #2.

Home media[edit]

The film was released on DVD (as single- and two-disc editions) and Blu-ray Disc on June 3, 2008. The two-disc DVD and the Blu-ray Disc versions contain four featurettes ("Shadow World: The Paranormal Past", "Becoming Sydney", "Birth of the Shadowman" and "Dissecting a Disaster"), deleted scenes, the theatrical trailer and a digital copy of the film for use on Windows and Mac computers.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Movie The Eye - Box Office Data". The Numbers. Retrieved 10 August 2011. 
  2. ^ a b The Eye (2008). Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-08-11.
  3. ^ Wendy R. Williams (2008-01-29). Jessica Alba Talks About 'The Eye'. New York Cool. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  4. ^ "The Eye Movie Reviews, Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2008-02-02. 
  5. ^ http://www.canmag.com/nw/10313-the-eye-movie-review

External links[edit]