The Eye (2002)

A blind woman gets a new pair of eyes which allow her to see for the first time since she was a child, but there’s a catch. Not only is she able to see the world around her for the first time in years, she also has acquired this brand new super power where she can see dead people! She can also sort of see the future. And the past. Well, another person’s past anyway. Then there’s mysterious shadowy guy who accompanies some of the dead people she sees. I felt like I could have used a brain transplant before understanding completely what was going on in this eye transplant movie.

Once again, the advances we’ve achieved in science and technology take it in the shorts. In fact, the movie shows us that our main character, Mun, can only achieve true happiness when she turns blind again. It’s one of those “don’t mess with the way nature intended you to be” deals and what’s even better than that, is that since this is a typically unimaginative film she even somehow manages to pick up a boyfriend during all this!

How exactly does Mun meet her love connection? Would you believe that it’s the hunky young psychotherapist (Dr. Wah) assigned to help her adjust to her newly sighted lifestyle? Of course you would!

In fact, you probably already have guessed that he would be the sort of doctor who would initially dismiss Mun’s claims of seeing ghosts until he slowly realizes that she’s a pretty good looking chick which inevitably boosts her credibility.

Other than being prime boyfriend material though, Dr. Wah is pretty useless. The way he helps her readjust to life with her new eyes is to hold up a stapler and tell her “this is a stapler. Before you could recognize it by touch, but now you’ll have to recognize it by sight.”

How many years of medical school did you go through for that? Doesn’t Mun have family and friends that could do the same thing?

Dr. Wah also turns out to be the nephew of Dr. Lo who did Mun’s cornea transplant. The only reason for this coincidence is to explain why Dr. Lo would give up the confidential records that revealed the identity of the cornea donor. And really, do you need any other reason than that?

Mun and Wah head off to Bangkok, Thailand where the donor, Ling, was from. Ling turns out to have been able to see who was going to die and would sit outside the front door of the house where that person lived and she would cry.

Unsurprisingly, she was not the most popular person in her village and was called a witch and people were really mean and threw rocks at her.

In spite of her cool mutant power, Ling went a little nuts when she foresaw a big disaster in her village that would kill tons of people. She ran around trying to warn people, but no one would listen and then a big fire broke out and roasted several hundred people.

Ling reacted to everyone ignoring her by hanging herself. Once someone got around to cutting Ling down, they did the obvious and shipped her eyes to Hong Kong for Mun to use. But they forgot to exorcise the eyes or erase them or whatever!

Mun and Wah do a meet and greet with Ling’s mom who is still holding a grudge over Ling giving up on herself and taking the easy way out. I laughed out loud when Mun was staying in Ling’s room in an effort to figure out what was going on and she breathlessly announced to Ling’s mom that Ling was trapped in a time warp and was re-enacting her suicide every night!

Time warp? Is there any phrase that immediately leads to a combination of audience eye rolling and laughter than “time warp?” Well, sure, there’s “transporter malfunction”, but I meant a phrase outside of the Star Trek universe.

Once back in Hong Kong, Mun has her own experience with predicting a big disaster that no one will believe. The scene was an exciting, tense one, but since it made no sense in the context of the story, it was totally stupid.

If Ling is no longer haunting our gal, why is Mun still having these visions? And more importantly, why is she suddenly able to predict this big disaster? Sure, it’s a nice bit of symmetry with the story of Ling, but the symmetry is so forced it comes off as purely a stunt to give the movie a big slam-bang finish, as well as to return Mun to her more comfortable world of darkness.

The Eye wanders around over predictable ground in an admittedly slick package.  In the course of trying to put its own spin on this overused horror plot though, it only manages to muddle it up into a increasing incomprehensibility as it slogs along (the movie takes forever to get going – wasting the first hour establishing Mun’s ability to see dead people again and again) toward its confusing and tacked on climax. Only worth watching if you have someone else’s eyes to waste.

© 2017 MonsterHunter

One thought on “The Eye (2002)

  1. Typical asian horror. In the end, the girl —SPOILERS— goes blind again for no reason other that neatly close the “circle”. And I fully agree with you, there was no reason for her to have any precognitve abilities other tha introduce an spectacular ending scene.

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