"The problem with Fernando Meirelles' Blindness, which screened this morning at the Cannes Film Festival, is that the milieu of the story, which is based on a novel by Jose Saramago, is bleak and confining," writes Jeff Wells. "It's more than just the milieu, actually. The second and third act of this film delivers a kind of lockdown vibe."
"In Blindness, Fernando Meirelles valiantly attempts to pin down Nobel laureate Jose Saramago's largely metaphorical work of fiction for the big screen: by giving the audience eyes on a world suddenly hit by a plague of blindness," notes Screen's Fionnuala Halligan. "The result makes for a traumatic viewing experience, but never does Mereilles convincingly illuminate the wrenching fear of his source material."
"The personal and mass chaos that would result if the human race lost its sense of vision is conveyed with diminished impact and an excess of stylish tics in Blindness, an intermittently harrowing but diluted take on Jose Saramago's shattering novel," writes Variety's Justin Chang. Despite a characteristically strong performance by Julianne Moore as a lone figure who retains her eyesight, bearing sad but heroic witness to the horrors around her, Fernando Meirelles' slickly crafted drama rarely achieves the visceral force, tragic scope and human resonance of Saramago's prose. Despite marquee names, mixed reviews might yield fewer eyes than desired for this international co-production."