(English, Japanese dialogue) The personal and mass chaos that would result if the entire human race lost its vision is conveyed with minor impact and an excess of stylish tics in "Blindness," an intermittently harrowing but diluted take on Jose Saramago
's shattering novel.
The author claims to have once returned to his hometown in order to "finish being born." Similarly, in these memoirs, Jose Saramago
is finally born as an individual at the moment when he connects a fiction writer's creativity with the imagination of the young boy Zezito, the son of a policeman and an illiterate woman.
Blindness gauges our prospects in a post-Darwinian, secular world in an age of moral and ecological crisis: "The only miracle we can perform is to go on living, said the woman, to preserve the fragility of life from day to day, as if it were blind and did not know where to go, and perhaps it is like that, perhaps it really does not know, it placed itself in our hands, after giving us intelligence, and this is what we have made of it." Jose Saramago
has written a parable for the millennium.
The success of Jose Saramago
as a fiction writer has been built in less than two decades.
's original conceit of a pair of coincidentally identical beings brought into repulsive-attractive contact, it must have occurred to him, was fraught with possibilities for narrative disaster.
With: Eugen Bavcar, Antonio Cicero, Arnaldo Godoy, William Lima Jr., Hermeto Pascoal, Joao Ubaldo Ribeiro, Oliver Sacks, Jose Saramago
, Hanna Schygulla, Marieta Severo, Agnes Varda, Wim Wenders.
Screenplay, Yvette Biro, Sluizer, based on the novel by Jose Saramago
. Camera (color), Goert Giltaij; editor, Jan Dop; music, Henny Vrienten; art director, Felix Murcia; costume designer, Jany Temime; visual effects supervisor, Joris Sluizer; sound designers (Dolby Digital), Antonio Bloch, Peter Flamman; assistant director, Manuel Canizares; casting, Ceclia Bayonas, Americo Pineiro, Patricia Vasconcelos.
FIRST PUBLISHED IN Lisbon in 1990, Journey to Portugal is dedicated, in part, to the "master traveler" Almeida Garrett, a writer whose own idiosyncratic but profoundly influential book of travels Jose Saramago
acknowledges as an inspirational source.