The Brunching Shuttlecocks Features

In the 2 1/2 years that I've been reviewing movies for your pleasure, I truly believe that my thoughts and attitudes have grown, matured. For example, the phrase 'chick flick' no longer is synonymous for 'boring, lame and probably foreign.' Case in point, I saw the 'blind leading the blind' flick, At First Sight, and I can call it a chick flick and not mean that in any way derogatory.

The film is based on the true accounts of a blind guy who meets a total babe who likes him, except for the fact that he's blind. So she arranges to have his sight restored, so that she can allow herself to love him. So he gets his sight back.

There's a lot to like in this Val Kilmer -- Mira Sorvino weep-fest. For one thing, Val's a massage therapist, so he rubs Mira's naked body over and over. In fact, Mira and Val get naked together a lot -- something about Val learning all about Mira through 'touch' or some nonsense. Whatever, it's a great trick to get a chick naked. "Babe, I want to really know you. Take your clothes off so I can better understand who you are with my hands." Also, since the plot hinges on the fact that once Val can see, he still doesn't really know what he's seeing, there are lots of neat visuals and funny shots of Val walking into mirrors.

Val Kilner does an excellent job of showing that even blind people can be jerks, Mira Sorvino does a pretty good job of showing that even architects can be total babes and Nathan Lane does a great job of showing that gay actors can't act straight, even if the directors put them in a strip club. All in all, it's a good cast.

There were a number of plot holes, but I feel odd pointing them out, since everything was based on a true story. If I criticize the plot, it's like I'm saying that these people's lives weren't very good. But damn it, they weren't. If you are going to have a movie made of your life, you really should make sure all of your dangling plot-lines are tightened up. Don't do anything that doesn't make sense, OK? You owe it to posterity to live a cohesive, succinct life that can be summed up nicely in 90 minutes.

Now I do need to warn people out there, this is a chick flick. It's about emotions and feelings and junk like that. No one is speared on the end of a tent-pole, nothing explodes at the push of a button into a huge fireball, there are no car chases. But as I've learned in the last 2 1/2 years, that doesn't necessarily mean it's a bad film. In fact, it's pretty good. And numerous shots of a naked Mira Sorvino help make up for anything that might be missing.

See guys, there's a trick to these movies. In a way, they're as much of a murder mystery as Basic Instinct. Instead of trying to figure out whodunnit, you try to figure out which of the 'symbols and issues' will have to be dealt with before the end of the film. Mira has a statue that she's just never been able to finish. Ten to one odds, she has a breakthrough near the end of the movie and is finally able to finish the statue. Val has only one memory of sight before he lost it at the age of 3, a memory of 'light, puffy things.' Even money we'll figure out what those puffy things are by the end of the film. So next time your special girl drags you to a bonafide chick flick, don't protest, bring a pad and pencil and spend the movie trying to out guess the symbolism. You'll have a blast!!!

Plus, for every Shakespeare In Love she drags you to, you get to bring her to Ronin. It all works out in the end.

Anyway, I give At First Sight 3 1/2 Babylons. It is a somewhat moving, tender look at blindness and how it really, really sucks. I was convinced.

Editor's Note:

I happened to be sitting back two rows and to the left of the SMC and the woman whom he has paid millions to be his girlfriend during At First Sight, and at the opening credits, I heard the SMC's girlfriend say to him, "I thought you said we were going to "Out of Sight"?

Don't let him fool you. He's a chick.

At First Sight
Rated: PG-13
Directed By: Irwin Winkler
Starring: Val Kilmer, Mira Sorvino, Nathan Lane, Kelly McGillis, Steven Weber and Bruce Davison as the really wimpy and useless doctor.

Join the Self-Made Critic Mailing List Back to The Shuttlecocks Homepage