THE EYE (2002) Reviews and overview

 

The Eye – also known as Seeing Ghosts and original title Gin gwai – is a 2002 Hong Kong-Singaporean horror film directed by Danny Pang and Oxide Chun Pang  [as the Pang brothers] from a screenplay co-written with Jojo Hui. It stars Angelica Lee, Cusnithorn Chotiphan and Lawrence Chou.

The film spawned two sequels by the Pang brothers, The Eye 2 and The Eye 10. There are three remakes of this film, including two Indian movies Naina (Hindi, 2005) Adhu (Tamil, 2004) and The Eye, a 2008 Hollywood production starring Jessica Alba.

Blind since the age of two, 20-year-old Hong Kong classical violinist Mun undergoes an eye cornea transplant after receiving a pair of new eyes from a donor. Initially, she is glad to have her sense of sight restored but becomes troubled when she starts seeing mysterious figures that seem to foretell gruesome deaths.

The night before her discharge from hospital, she sees a shadowy figure accompanying a patient out of the room and the next morning the patient is pronounced dead.

Mun goes to see her doctor’s nephew, Doctor Wah, a psychologist, about the strange entities that she has been seeing. He is sceptical at first, but as he gradually develops a closer relationship with her, he decides to accompany her on a trip to northern Thailand to find Ling, the eye donor.

When they ask a village doctor about Ling and her family, he is unwilling to reveal anything but becomes more cooperative when Mun tells him that she sees what Ling used to see. Apparently, Ling had a psychic ability that allowed her to foresee death and disaster…

Reviews:

“The film’s treatment of Ka-man’s isolation as she attempts to enter the world of the seeing provides its emotional hinge, obscured by the reliance on redundantly flashy visual effects that occasionally provide a genuine frisson…” James Marriott, Kim Newman, Horror! 333 Films to Scare You to Death

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The Eye boasts a highly enjoyable and scary first half, but quickly goes downhill there after. Once the secret of the cornea’s former owner is revealed, the film ceases to be a ghost story and instead becomes a minor mystery that culminates in a rather out-of-place sequence involving fireballs and more special effects.” Beyond Hollywood

“Despite the many Asian horror tropes on hand, The Eye is sufficiently unnerving and suspenseful for the most of its running time and would have been satisfying had it ended on the restrained “acknowledging the dead” climax but the Pang Bros. follow that up by decimating hundreds of extras (and a poor CGI rat) with a needless fiery surprise “it’s not over yet” ending…” DVD Beaver

Cast and characters:

Angelica Lee … Wong Kar Mun (as Lee Sin-Je)
Lawrence Chou … Doctor Wah
Jinda Duangtoy … Old Lady in the Hospital
Yut Lai So … Yingying
Candy Lo … Yee (Mun’s Sister)
Edmund Chen … Doctor Lo
Yin Ping Ko … Mun’s grandmother
Florence Wu … Nurse
Wisarup Annuar … Dark Figure
Yuet Siu Wong … Ghost in the Hospital
Wing-Wai Chin … Hospital Caretaker
Tao Leung … Ghost on the Highway
Mylio Lau … Wah’s Secretary (as Miyuki Lau)
Ousinthorn Chotphan … Mun as a Little Girl
Dampongongtrakul Sawadee … Yee as a Little Girl

Trailer:

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