Thursday, September 25, 2008

A Look At Fernando Mereilles' Blindness

The other night, I went to a Variety Magazine-sponsored screening of the new Julianne Moore drama “Blindness.” Based upon José Saramago’s Nobel Prize-winning novel, “Blindness” is about a sudden epidemic of sightlessness and what follows when the victims are quarantined and essentially left by the government to fend for themselves.

From the movie’s first frame, director Fernando Mereilles captures with searing honesty the panic of each character suddenly going blind. The chaos that ensues is uncomfortable to watch but impossible to look away from. There’s some relief at the end, but “Blindness” is definitely not for the faint of heart.

Mark Ruffalo and Julianne Moore in "Blindness"

Moore proves once again why she is one of the most gifted actresses of our time, delivering a raw, riveting performance as the only person immune to the virus. Witnessing its dehumanizing impact, her character takes charge when a villainous opportunist (Gael García Bernal) hatches a plan to extort an excruciating price for food rations. Moore is matched by affecting turns from a talented supporting cast that includes Mark Ruffalo, Danny Glover and Alice Braga.

After the screening, some of the cast stopped by for a Q&A with the audience.

Danny Glover (center), Mark Ruffalo (right) and an unidentified cast member
at Variety's special screening
I had the pleasure of exchanging smiles with the genteel Danny Glover, looking unusually thin, and Mark Ruffalo—yes, he’s even cuter in person. There's something about meeting celebrities right after seeing them perform that invariably makes me a little starstruck.

Coming up…a special evening for participants in the upcoming Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk and my Top 5 romantic restaurants of all-time.

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