Torch Online Reviews: The Eye

The horror genre failed to get off to a great start in 2008, and “The Eye” is yet another disappointment.

The film was directed by up and comers David Moreau and Xavier Palud, who have previously worked together on the movie, “Ils.” “The Eye,” a remake of an East-Asian Horror movie released under the same name in 2002, hit theaters this time on Feb. 1.

The story revolves around Sydney Wells (Jessica Alba, Sin City) who has been blind since the age of five. She lives an otherwise normal life, however, living on her own and being an accomplished violist. Thanks to stem cell research, 20 years after she has lost her eyesight, she is having surgery to receive a donor’s eyes. Just as her problems seem to be coming to an end, all new troubles arise as she begins to frequently see terrifying images.

At this point in the movie, she is aided by her therapist Paul Faulkner (Alessandro Nivola, “Jurassic Park 3”). He is faced with the struggles of not knowing whether to believe Wells’ stories of the images or to blame them on an adjustment to the eyes.

“The Eye” can best be described as a hybrid between “The Sixth Sense” and “The Ring” (also an Asian remake). The problem is it doesn’t seem to capture the effectiveness of either. There is no suspense as we have a fairly rough idea of what is happening throughout the whole movie. Also, the scenes that were intended to be scary fail to provide anything new or even relatively scary in terms of images as the movie is held back by its PG-13 rating.

In spite of the holes in the movie, the acting does not hold too much responsibility in the matter. Jessica Alba’s performance is very middle-of-the-road as it does not have a big effect on the overall quality of the movie. There seems to be little she could have done to salvage the film. Alessandro Nivola is actually quite good in his supporting role as a young and edgy therapist, and he gives the movie some life while he is on screen.

With most of the movie’s 97 minutes being dedicated to building up suspense with the occasional attempt at scaring you, “The Eye” fails to capitalize on what would otherwise be a good ending by making it feel rushed. It seems to reflect the movie overall, in that it probably could have been much better with the potential of a somewhat interesting story and good cast; they just had problems reflecting it on the screen.