Blind (2019)

An actress who has lost her sight is trying to get back on her feet and make her life as good as possible while adapting to her new situation, her new friends help greatly, but a masked man lurks.

Written by Joe Knetter, Blind is a rather different story than what fans of his early written work have come to expect from the man. Here, his work was created for leading lady Sarah French in mind, wanting to give her a complex character to sink her teeth into and looking getting inspiration directly from her. This is well achieved, giving the lead of Faye layers to work with and a particular situation that can heighten the dangers of having someone watching her. Director Marcel Walz takes this script and turns it into a beautiful film that takes its time setting up the lead character. This time taken comes off a bit too long at times, but once things get going, they become really interesting.

The film’s main attraction for this reviewer and what will keep most viewers completely riveted are the visuals. Blind is possibly the most visually compelling film about a visually impaired character, each scene in the film is meticulously planned with lighting and shadows showing exactly what they need to, how they need to, giving the story an ambiance that is hard to beat and just about perfect for the whole package. The visuals come together with a mix of the lighting, the framing by cinematographer Thomas Rist, the editing, and the color correction. Here everything comes together to create scenes that will not only catch the eye but also fascinate with how perfectly lit they are. The lighting is one of the main attractions in a lot of the scenes, something a bit unexpected from a film about a woman in lives in the dark. Another very interesting visual aspect is the opening credits with braille text slowly turning into regular text for the visually capable, something that sets the tone for the entire film from the get-go.

The main part of the film here is the lady the whole thing was built for and around, Sarah French. She plays the lead of Faye and does a fantastic job of giving subtle nuances to her character, creating a human on screen with very realistic reactions that are on the more calculated side of things instead of the usual slasher large reactions. Her work here gives the film its tone and its energy, creating something that is her own. Also giving a really good performance is horror mainstay Caroline Williams playing a woman who’s always been blind and is there for Faye, Sophia, giving her a way of winning the attention in most of her scenes. Fans of Williams will love her work here. Rounding out the main cast is Tyler Gallant as Luke, the mute man who is interested in Faye and doesn’t quite know how to go about things. He plays this man well and gives him a personality without ever really speaking a word. Last but not least is Jed Rowen as Pretty Boy, the bad guy here and a character about which the least said the better to keep as much of the surprise as possible. Rowen’s performance is good here while feeling a bit stiff, something that seems to be a wanted effect in the film.

Blind is a film that will grab the viewer visually and have them pay attention throughout because of its fantastic imagery, its colors and framing, as well as Sarah French’s performance. The film showcases a side of Joe Knetter’s writing that hopefully will be seen a lot more in the future. The directing by Marcel Walz creates a film that is coherent and works perfectly for the lead even though it has a few sequences that feel a bit overly long. Despite these, the film moves fairly fast and what is on the screen makes it all come together in a way that is entertaining.