The Eye (2008 film): Wikis


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The Eye

Promotional poster for The Eye
Directed by David Moreau
Xavier Palud
Produced by Peter Chan
Paula Wagner
Written by Original Screenplay:
Jo Jo Hui Yuet-chun
The Pang Brothers
Sebastian Gutierrez
Starring Jessica Alba
Parker Posey
Alessandro Nivola
Music by Marco Beltrami
Cinematography Jeff Jur
Editing by Patrick Lussier
Distributed by Lionsgate
Paramount Vantage
Release date(s) February 1, 2008
Running time 98 min
Country USA
Language English
Budget $12,000,000
Gross revenue $56,309,766
Followed by The Eye 2

The Eye is a 2008 horror film starring Jessica Alba. It is a remake of the 2002 Hong Kong-Thai-Singaporean film of the same name. The film was rated PG-13 by the MPAA for "violence/terror and disturbing content."[1]



Sydney Wells 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 unravelling the mystery of the visions, and trying to convince others, primarily her visual therapist, Paul Faulkner, who becomes a helpmate in her quest. She knows that she is not going insane. She finds herself in Mexico, where the donated corneas were originally from. The fire and people dying are the result of an industrial accident that the former donor foretold and shortly after that hanged herself because she could not stop the accident from occurring. Sydney puts the spirit to rest, and began 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, had begun to try and 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.

Differences from the Original Film



  • Mun was blinded at age of 2. No explanation given.
  • Mun lives with her grandmother and sister. Her parents are mentioned in the film but not seen.
  • Mun's a violinist in an Orchestra for the blind.
  • Mun sees the pale female ghost during a calligraphy class.
  • Mun sees the female mother ghost licking BBQ Pork at the Chinese restaurant.
  • Five people know that Mun can see ghosts: Dr Wah, Dr Lo, Her grandmother, Her sister, An employee at the Chinese restaurant.
  • Ying Ying takes a photo with Mun before she goes for the operation for her death.
  • When Mun see's the boy ghost with the lost report card the first time, the boy was eating candle wax from the ground. Afterward, the deceased boy's father comes out of the apartment and asks Mun what she was doing.
  • The boy's name was never mentioned.
  • The boy's family explained to Mun's grandmother and sister that their boy committed suicide because the father did not believe that he lost his report card and was mad at him.

2008 Remake

  • Sydney was blinded at age of 5 because there was an accident involved with her sister.
  • Sydney lives alone, her grandmother is not mentioned. Also, her parents died prior to the film.
  • Sydney's a violinist in a normal Orchestra, seems to be the only one blind.
  • Sydney sees the pale female ghost at a cafe.
  • Sydney witness how the Chinese restaurant burns down.
  • No one but Dr. Faulkner knew that Sydney could see ghosts.
  • Alicia takes a photo with Sydney when Sydney is discharged from the hospital. She dies before Sydney returns to the hospital for a second time.
  • When Sydney see's the boy ghost with the lost report card the first time, the boy was kneeing on the ground. When she sees him the second time outside the lift, the deceased boy's mother asks her "He's here isn't he? My Tomi?"
  • The boy's father did not appear (He does appear in a deleted scene.) and the explanation of the boy's experiences with his family was not mentioned.



Using the pretext of a psychological thriller and paranormal experiences, the film explores mental illness, and in particular, of 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.


Remake rights to the Pang Brothers' original 2002 Hong Kong film, The Eye, were purchased by Cruise/Wagner Productions. This American remake follows Naina, a Hindi movie released in 2005, that is also based on the Pang Brothers' film. Another notable point is that there was a movie titled Kokila (1990) in Telugu, the third-most spoken Indian language, which had a very similar story. The protagonist in the film loses his eyes and has them transplanted from a hermit who has been murdered. The protagonist starts seeing the hermit's murder repeatedly, and the officer investigating that murder stumbles on the protagonist, and they eventually arrest the assassin, after which the protagonist gets normal vision. Whether the Indian film in a regional language influenced Kokila is not known.

Alba spent much time with the blind soprano Jessica Bachicha to learn about how blind people lived, used the white cane, read Braille etc.[2]

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.


Exteriors were shot primarily in 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 bldg. 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]

DVD & Blu-ray

The film was released on Region 1 DVD and Region A Blu-ray on June 3, 2008. The DVD release comes in both a one-disc version, a Blu-ray Disc and an identical two-disc Special Edition version which they both contain four featurettes - "Shadow World: The Paranormal Past," "Becoming Sydney," "Birth of the Shadowman" and "Dissecting a Disaster", deleted scenes and the theatrical trailer. The two-disc DVD and Blu-ray versions include a digital copy of the film for use on Windows and Mac computers.


Critical reception

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]

Box office performance

The film opened in second place at the U.S box office with $12.4 million, matching its $12 million budget.[5] As of October 5, 2008, the film has a domestic gross of $31,418,697 with a foreign gross of $25,367,775 totaling an international gross of $56,786,472. In United Kingdom, it grossed $1,398,958 in its opening weekend at #2.


A sequel was originally planned. But it was dropped when the film received generally negative reviews from critics.


External links


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