Friday, October 2, 2009

The Eye (Remake) (movie #7)

I must say, I was hesitant to watch this remake after the release of the "One Missed Call" remake. That movie was one of the worst I've ever seen, so I had doubts about this movie, but I like Jessica Alba, so I gave it a chance last night. "The Eye" remake is actually quite good. It's a lot closer to a shot-for-shot remake of the original, so there's not much new ground being tread here in this movie, but Jessica Alba plays her character very well and makes us feel sympathy for her right from the beginning. She's a woman who's been blind since having an accident when she was 5 years old, and now, thanks to a cornea transplant, she's going to be able to see for the first time in many many years. What she finds, though, is that as her newfound vision becomes clearer, she's seeing horrible, ghostly visions that prompt her to want to find out who donated her new eyes and why this woman was able to see ghosts.

Something that I admired about the original "The Eye" is that it helped me to see something about Asian horror movies that doesn't carry over into a lot of US horror movies. In the original "The Eye," we'd see a lot of ghostly images, and we'd be looking right at them, thinking they weren't THAT scary, when suddenly they'd start attacking the main character, and even though we'd been looking at them the whole time, we'd still jump (at least I did) when they started to attack. In the remake, I expected them to change that (and they did) because in US movies, filmmakers seem to think that scary images are only scary if they pop up out of nowhere and "surprise" us, they don't trust their ghosts to be scary enough if we're staring at them the whole time before they attack. The only US movie I've seen that attempts this "let's look at the ghost the whole time and trust that it's scary enough on its own without employing disappearing jump tactics" is the original "Carnival of Souls" from the 60s.

Nevertheless, I still enjoyed this movie a lot. There's a little too much CGI going on here. I don't hate CGI like some people do, but when I see the original movie work without it, I get snippy when they feel the need to use it in the remake. I appreciate this movie for the acting, though, and for the way the script lets the characters interact and move forward with the plan to find out who the cornea donor was even though they don't totally believe Alba's character when she says she's seeing dead people. It annoys me when characters refuse to believe that ghostly things are happening, because even though I know it's far-fetched and ghosts aren't real, it's still not helpful for characters to implement the "let's sit here and pretend nothing is happening as our lives fall apart" tactic. I was glad that here in this movie, as in the original, the characters decided to act as though the ghostly happenings wee true at least long enough to try to do something about it, instead of standing around saying "oh, ghosts aren't real" even as ghosts attacked and killed their families and friends.

All in all this was an enjoyable movie, loads better than the dismal "One Missed Call."


  1. Now I'm curious to see this movie. From your description I'm not sure whether it'd freak me out or piss me off, but I'm a sucker for CGI representations of otherworldly second-sight.

  2. I think that of all the depictions of second sight that I've seen in movies, this one did a pretty good job making it believable. The images were cool to look at but after seeing the original movie, they didn't seem as cool. I do like both movies, though.