“Blindness” Made Visible

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One of my favorite novels, “Blindness” by the Nobel Prize winner Jose Saramago, is being made into a movie. The director is one I respect – the Brazilian Fernando Meirelles, who’s created both “City of God” and “The Constant Gardener.” IMDB lists the shooting date for “Blindness” in 2008. What is interesting and particularly fascinating about the project of translating this book to the screen will be the task of handling Point Of View. Will the doctor’s wife, the one woman who can see in the novel, be the lead character? Also, there’s inherent tension (and, perhaps, irony) with the concept of filming a world where virtually no one can see. Not to mention trying to imbue the movie with the type of forcefulness and action of a novel that eschews punctuation marks in favor of a torrent of prose. But aside from those more theoretical thoughts, I am excited to see how the new film turns out. I’m excited even though it’s accompanied by a trace of sadness, because whenever one of my favorite books gets turned into a movie, I feel like I’ve lost a bit of my original vision, as though my imagination becomes tainted by the movie’s images and replaces all my conceptions with that of the filmmaker. I could, I suppose, not go to see it, but somehow my curiosity always wins out.

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  1. Not yet. Right now I’m going through Gina Nahai’s new novel, Caspian Rain, and then I’ve got a stack of memoirs to get through. Were you blown “away” by it? (sorry, couldn’t resist).