Sam's Blog

Twenty-four hours is like three weeks!


Posted by samgr on May 9, 2008

Hey, I’m still alive. So, I see on Apple Trailers that they’re making a movie out of Blindness, the novel by Jose Saramago. I read the book when I was down in Costa Rica, pretty much purely by chance. I found it in a hostel’s book-swap shelf. But I thought it was incredible. Also very cinematic: I was picturing it as a movie as I was reading it.

The short version is that there’s a mysterious epidemic of blindness in a city. (Unclear exactly where it takes place, whether it’s Europe or Latin America or whatever.) The affected end up getting herded into a containment facility in an ex-psychiatric ward, where they are more or less abandoned by the authorities and terrible, terrible things happen.

For the character of the doctor’s wife—who pretends to be blind but can actually see—I had dream-cast Mary McDonnell (President Roslin) in my head. Looks like in this version it’s going to be Julianne Moore. Okay, but I like my idea better.

Also, I imagine that the movie is not going to be able to be quite as horrific and gruesome as the book is in parts, or it would end up rated NC-17. I don’t know what I think about this. The novel plays a neat narrative trick where the most horrible things that happen near the end you don’t actually see, the author only describes the sounds. So the reader becomes blind, too, for a while. I kind of hope the movie does this too; it’s very doable. Just fade to white and hear what happens.

In any case, this reminds me to go to the library and check out some more of Saramago’s books, which I had planned to do but forgotten about.


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