In Review: Blind

by Maryann O'Connor on 10/04/2015


Ingrid’s (Ellen Dorrit Petersen) rich inner life, her devotion to holding on to every last memory afforded her by her ultimately treacherous eyes is the basis of a massively thought-provoking film, Eskil Vogt’s Blind. 

The majority of the Norwegian-set film is played out in Ingrid’s mind, except for when she is with other people. Even then, her upset at being confined to her mind and the apartment, a self-imposed exile from the world she is too trepidatious to re-enter, she disappears off into a fantasy world of what her husband Morten (Henrik Rafaelsen) might be typing next to her. She instead faces her fears through characters she’s made up; a lonely man (Marius Kolbenstvedt) and a divorced mother (Vera Vitali), who live out their own stories, together and apart before becoming embroiled in Ingrid and Morten’s own relationship as Ingrid manages the tipping point of her life.

The fantasy characters are so effectively written that we really get a sense of them as people rather than mere constructs. But little things like the locations of the characters changing around them alerts you to Ingrid having forgotten where the drama of that moment is taking place.

The scenarios imagined by writer/director Eskil Vogt brusquely convey Ingrid’s pain in not being able to brush her doubts away. But it’s not just pain on show, it’s a hard-fought, growing acceptance of a new state of existence, something which all of us can relate to.  The fantasy characters are much more intense in their emotions than Ellen Dorrit Petersen’s Ingrid – Vera Vitali perfectly exhibiting the strength of Ingrid’s upset and anger at her helplessness.

The unnamed fears of the dark night are tangible all day long for Ingrid: the simple fears we all have except those with the capability of sight can open their eyes for instant reassurance. Or not…such lingering paranoia might be familiar to many of us. Scrutiny of the physical and emotional aspects of living and how change forces us to re-evaluate everything we think we know makes for an extremely powerful bit of film-making. Blind is coarse, thoughtful and beautiful in its portrayal of struggle against misfortunes, large and small.

Maryann has awarded Blind four Torches of Truth

4 torches

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