The Eye (2002) Dir. Oxide Pang Chun & Danny Pang and The Eye (2008) Dir. David Moreau & Xavier Palud
For the first time ever, I chose to experience these films in a different way from the usual. For once, I watched the American remake before the Asian. Never has this been done before in the history of Peatree Bojangles’ years of viewing Asian horror. So I watched the Jessica Alba one first, what could go wrong, I wondered, it’s Jessica Alba. If it’s awful, I can just close my eyes and imagine her naked for an hour and half. Also, the Chinese one has a hottie, even her sis is pretty banging, so you know, silver lining. If it gets bad Pea Bo, get naked and mute it.
I guess you’d like to know the storyline, which saddens me because I’ll tell you now; both films are goddamn awful. So, the main girl portrayed by Alba, and in the Chinese one, by Angelica Lee is blind and has been since childhood. They are about to undergo life-changing surgery, which will restore their sight. Fascinating how Jessica Alba is so stunningly put together even when blind. She has wonderfully styled hair, great natural looking make up and a lovely ensemble of clothes. Obviously I’m not saying blind people should look butters, but they could have made an effort not to style her so well. Am I being incredibly insensitive as usual? Yeah? Well fuck you.
So anyway, they go for surgery, it’s a success (OR IS IT?!) and they begin the recovery stage. Almost straight away they notice something strange – they can see things that may not be there. At first they suggest to themselves it’s a side effect, because there really isn’t any other explanation. Then the things they see begin to become real – it’s no longer a trick of the eyes. The film becomes a furious attempt to convince people, including their visual therapist doctors, that they can ‘see dead people’. Not only that, they start to get visions of something in particular, and begin to unravel the mystery and reason behind it all. EVENTUALLY, they figure it out blah blah blah something something BOOM the end.
Alba can see the ‘carriers’ of the dead or reapers, as quite wonderfully menacing shadows, with deformed screams and as a flickering apparition. The Chinese ones weren’t all that different, but were a strange hybrid of reaper and human. They had dark shadowed bodies and human heads. At first my reaction was to side with the American version for being creepier, but thinking about it I liked the fact that the Chinese didn’t feel the need to make them menacing. Instead they were silently frightening, and that’s something that Asian horror does well.
I’m not going to lie, at one point I walked away to get some food and didn’t even bother pausing it. This goes for both films at the exact time: when the figure out whom the eye donor is. The film just drags on. You know, I’m referring to both films as one for the very reason that they’re more of less exactly the same and are just as dull as each other. Jessica Alba has a shower scene, but no boob, so it’s pretty pointless.
The one filmed in Hong Kong has the advantage of beautiful scenery and delicate imagery. Despite, this it still didn’t win. The American version wins because Jessica Alba. I mean c’mon. It wins, but I must warn you that they are both quite shit, so just don’t bother anyway. If anything, this article is pointless.
Well this was a waste of my time.