The Eye (2008)
"The Eye" as you may know is a Hollywood remake of "Gin gwai" which came out of Hong Kong in 2002 and with spooky children you can see the Eastern influence. But to be honest "The Eye" which features Jessica Alba as a blind violinist reminded me just as much of "Blink" which came out in 1994 and featured Madeleine Stowe as a blind musician who has eye surgery. In fact "The Eye" reminded me of just about any movie I have watched which featured organ donation and before long the magical words "cellular memory" cropped up as Alba's character suffers from strange visions. In fairness there is more to "The Eye" than just "cellular memory" it evolves into premonition territory and that in many ways made it worse.
Sydney Wells (Jessica Alba - Good Luck Chuck) has been blind since the age of 5 when she was playing with fireworks with her sister and despite having had one eye operation she remained blind. But now at the assistance of her sister she agrees to have another eye transplant and whilst her sight is initially blurry it seems like the operation was a success. That is until Sydney starts having strange visions which she believes are connected with the donor so with the aid of her therapist Paul Faulkner (Alessandro Nivola - The Clearing) sets about trying to find answers to what she is seeing.
First things first and you can see the eastern influence on "The Eye" immediately, from the colour palettes used to the predominant use of creepy kids. But whilst having this visual influence it doesn't manage to achieve the same level of creepiness that eastern horror movies are known for. In fact it feels like a movie going through the motions, mimicking a style whilst not fully getting to grips with it.
Now part of the trouble is that when it comes to eye donor movies is that many of them throw up the same thing "cellular memory" and so whilst we get the initial moment of confusion as Sydney suffers from seeing unexplainable things it's not long before she comes up with the theory that she is seeing things from the donor's point of view. Now in fairness there is something a little clever about this as in the way Sydney sees herself but then the storyline evolves and morphs firstly into one movie and then another. It did little for me especially when it almost made a movie joke about what it was evolving in to.
As for the acting, well yes Jessica Alba and Alessandro Nivola were okay together but neither of them managed to create a character which I connected with. It almost felt like both Alba and Nivola were cast because they looked good together rather than for what they could bring to their parts. In fact Parker Posey as Sydney's sister came across as delivering more character than either Alba or Nivola.
What this all boils down to is that "The Eye" isn't a bad movie just an ordinary one which feels like it is going through the motions, working through the cliches and mimicking style but never really bringing it to life.
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