Open Your Eyes movie review: Superb film mixes clever plot and good acting

Open Your Eyes movie review

Open Your Eyes Movie Review: Alejandro Amenabar’s sophomore, Open Your Eyes movie, led me to contemplate, wonder, and puzzle more than any other picture that came out of the 1998 Sundance Film Festival. Films of this level of brilliance, daring, and complexity appear so infrequently that it’s necessary to announce their coming.

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Overview of Open Your Eyes movie 1997

  • Genre: drama, mystery, sci-fi
  • Director: Alejandro Amenábar
  • Writers: Alejandro Amenábar, Mateo Gil
  • Stars: Eduardo Noriega, Penélope Cruz, Chete Lera

Information the film

Open Your Eyes movie review

Plot summary

Before going into the Open Your Eyes movie review, let’s take a look at the movie synopsis. The film is about Cesar, who is a dashing playboy who prides himself on only sleeping with each woman once. He meets and falls in love with Sofia, his best friend’s date, during a party. Nuria, a vindictive former one-night affair, jeopardizes Cesar’s chances by driving him and herself over an embankment. Cesar survives, but his face has been permanently damaged. He feels ostracized and suicidal after being forced to wear a mask to disguise his disability. A miraculous new surgical method, on the other hand, provides the possibility of a complete recovery.

He and Sofia become involved once more because he is happy. Things grow unsettled, though, when his old damaged face resurfaces. When he wakes up, he discovers that Nuria, not Sofia, is his girlfriend. As all evidence shows, he has been driven insane, and everyone believes she is Sofia. He murders her because he is insane. A psychologist, who has been placed in jail for the criminally insane, seeks to assist him to escape. He realizes that the answers to his reality shifts may be found at a strange cryonics facility.

Open Your Eyes cast

Open Your Eyes cast

  • Eduardo Noriega as César, a handsome, confident, and wealthy young man. He has an endless string of beautiful and willing women.
  • Fele Martínez as Pelayo, César’s best friend, whose personality is marked by his inferiority complex when it comes to meeting women.
  • Penélope Cruz as Sofía, César’s love interest.
  • Najwa Nimri as Nuria, César’s former lover, who still has feelings for him.
  • Tristán Ulloa as Camarero
  • Chete Lera as Antonio, a psychologist who tries to help.
  • Gérard Barray as Duvernois, a representative of the L.E. company

Open Your Eyes movie review

Open Your Eyes 1997 is a fantastic film. It appears to be a surrealist creation at first glance. It takes you on a perplexing journey through reality, where the hero’s initially attractive face is alternately hideously deformed and then restored; where Penelope Cruz becomes his girlfriend and then mysteriously transforms into a psychotically unbalanced ex whom everyone except the hero insists is Penelope Cruz.

It’s difficult not to think of the movie as a refreshingly experimental surreal film, but it’s not. In the Open Your Eyes movie review, it’s hard to describe the film without revealing its sci-fi end, which provides a wonderfully plausible explanation for the quirky reality.

Open Your Eyes movie review

It accomplishes this primarily by nesting the revelation within a Chinese box of perplexing twists, reality flips, and clues so that when the ending arrives, it provides an audaciously logical explanation of everything that has gone before, rather than, as in many of the aforementioned, an out-of-the-blue twist that abruptly cuts the culmination of befuddling events off without any self-contained explanation.

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1919), a renowned silent German film set inside a warped universe that was later discovered to be inside the imaginings of a lunatic, is intentionally referenced in the film. Cesar is the hero’s name, and he is named after Caligari’s hero. Few movies have dared to imitate The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari’s inner universe, which was created with warped exaggerated sets. On the other hand, Open Your Eyes film brilliantly updates the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari in terms of current science-fiction, replacing the hypnotic subjective reality of the lunatic controlled by a hypnotist/psychologist with a Virtual Reality illusion.

The direction is straightforward and unadorned. Visual effects aren’t required by director Alejandro Amenabar; the story is what drives the picture. Eduardo Noriega’s deformity creates a frightening sense of social isolation in the midst of the film. When Amenabar does reveal his hand, it has a startling impact, such as when scientist Gerard Berray tries to convince Eduardo Noriega that he can manipulate reality around him, and Noriega replies that if he could, he would wish everyone would be silent, which they quickly do. The disfigured Eduardo Noriega pursues a clockwork mime artist with a painted white face and stays there observing her as a sudden torrent of rain wipes her makeup away, revealing Penelope Cruz underneath.

Open Your Eyes meaning

Here are some outstanding positive Open Your Eyes movie reviews from the viewers:

Amenábar’s Open Your Eyes movie, like Almodovar’s Volver, is proof that Penelope Cruz is a hundred times better when she’s acting in her home tongue, displaying a blend of fragility and sexuality that might drive anyone insane. This, by the way, is directly related to the storyline, a film with such audacity and confidence in its every move that it impresses even when those actions don’t exactly hit the right notes.

The film loses some momentum when the discovery of what is truly happening occurs in the third act, but I was already engrossed enough in the characters to allow what is unquestionably a bizarre notion to interrupt my enjoyment. It also helps that the concluding moments, which are shot atop a high-rise in Madrid, are breathtaking. Consider my eyes open, Mr. Amenábar. It’s better to be late than never.

My head was working overtime, so I needed that exposition dump at the end. A complex plot with many twists and turns had me questioning what was being dreamed and what was real. Amenabar successfully blends aspects from several genres, transforming what appeared to be a typical drama into something I could never have imagined. Maybe I’m straining with the analogy, but it reminds me of Vertigo. Penelope Cruz was fantastic, so we’ll have to wait and see what the Cruise version has to say.

Hopefully, through the Open Your Eyes movie review, you will add this movie to your favorite list. In addition, you can refer to other top lists, best movies at Spanish Language Movies.