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Open Your Eyes

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Overview

The line between dreams and reality become increasingly blurred after a womanizing playboy is nearly killed by a jilted lover in Spanish director Alejandro Amenabar's masterful sophomore effort Abre Los Ojos Open Your Eyes. It would seem as if Cesar Eduardo Noriega has it all. Handsome, charming, and with money to burn, he can get any girl he wants, and usually does so on a nightly basis. Following a birthday party in which he chats up Sofia Penelope Cruz, the date of his best friend Pelayo Fele Martinez, Cesar ...
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Overview

The line between dreams and reality become increasingly blurred after a womanizing playboy is nearly killed by a jilted lover in Spanish director Alejandro Amenabar's masterful sophomore effort Abre Los Ojos Open Your Eyes. It would seem as if Cesar Eduardo Noriega has it all. Handsome, charming, and with money to burn, he can get any girl he wants, and usually does so on a nightly basis. Following a birthday party in which he chats up Sofia Penelope Cruz, the date of his best friend Pelayo Fele Martinez, Cesar is plunged headfirst into a nightmare world when jealous former lover Nuria Najwa Nimri swallows a handful of pills and sends her car careening into a cement wall with the terrified playboy as her hapless passenger. With his formerly strikingly handsome face now twisted into a hideous mass of scarred flesh, Cesar's ugly emotions are now externalized for all to see. Pining for a plastic-surgery miracle to return him to his former glory so that he can seek out Sofia and take a chance at real love, he is pleasantly surprised when the doctors make a breakthrough and Sofia accepts him back into her life. Although all seems perfect for the moment, the formerly soulless player finds that this is only the beginning of his increasingly disturbing journey. Why is Sofia changing appearance and turning into Nuria periodically? And why won't the police and his psychiatrist believe Cesar's desperate attempts to rationalize a world that is growing increasingly surreal? Could it have something to do with a doctor Cesar has seen on television who keeps appearing and attempting to help him out of his nightmare? Peeling away at the layers of his subconscious, Cesar begins to realize that reality is no more than a state of mind, and that in order to get his life back he may be forced to take unthinkable measures.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
Open Your Eyes opened doors in Hollywood for its Spanish director, Alejandro Amenabar. Amenabar and screenwriter Mateo Gil created an odd and compelling film that is by turns unsettling and somewhat silly. The film is at its strongest when dramatizing how the narcissistic womanizer Cesar (Eduardo Noriega, who also starred in Amenabar's first film, Thesis) deals with his disfigurement. His obsession with his appearance is so severe that he even stops to look in the mirror while fleeing the scene of a brutal murder. Certainly, the makeup job makes the once handsome Cesar look somewhat monstrous, but no one is nearly as repulsed by his looks as he is. The audience is in a position to recognize that Cesar's hideous disfigurement is an accurate reflection of the ugliness inside of him, having seen the way he's treated his best friend, Pelayo (Fele Martinez), and his erstwhile girlfriend, Nuria (Najwa Nimri of Before Night Falls). The interchangeableness of Nuria and Sofia (Penelope Cruz) in his "dream" life (if it is a dream) suggests a clear analogy for Cesar's archaic view of women, and further intimates that Cesar is subconsciously aware of, and repulsed by, his inner self. It's clear that even if he is whole physically, that ugliness will find a way to manifest itself. The film works brilliantly on this metaphorical level, but its science fiction underpinnings are not quite convincing. The ending is entertaining in a roundabout way, but its fancifulness dampens some of the movie's intriguing power. The film was not widely distributed in the U.S., but it got the attention of actor Tom Cruise, who in turn showed it to writer/director Cameron Crowe (Almost Famous), and the two collaborated on a Hollywood remake, Vanilla Sky. Cruise also produced Amenabar's first Hollywood production, The Others.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/17/2000
  • UPC: 012236060734
  • Original Release: 1997
  • Rating:

  • Source: Live / Artisan
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Eduardo Noriega Cesar
Penélope Cruz Sofia
Chete Lera Antonio
Fele Martínez Pelayo
Najwa Nimri Nuria
Gérard Barray Man on TV
Technical Credits
Alejandro Amenábar Director, Score Composer
Fernando Bovaira Executive Producer
Hans Burmann Cinematographer
Wolfgang Burmann Art Director
José Luis Cuerda Executive Producer
Maria Elena de Rojas Editor
Mateo Gil Screenwriter
Goldstein & Steinberg Sound/Sound Designer
Mariano Marin Score Composer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    "the movie"

    I saw the movie Vanilla Sky first before seeing this movie, but it was a good move. Abre los ojos was the better version, but i cant understand spanish that well. The movie Vanilla sky is my favorite, but abre los ojos is right next to Vanilla Sky in my ratings! Abre Los Ojos is a great movie to watch for inspiration (ideas for making movies or writing stories), and entertainment!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Best Film Ever

    Abre los Ojos is perhaps the best movie I have ever seen. Vanilla Sky is simply a second-rate ripoff. The acting here is superb and the director doesn't do things to give away the story half-way through the movie like Crowe did in the American version of the film. The only wise decision Crowe made was to recast Cruz in the same role she played in the original film. She should have turned him down though. Why mess with success.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Spanish Eyes.

    Be still and have a lover in your arms when you see Abres los Ojos. Can't read? Try Vanilla Sky. Abres los Ojos needs to be seen BEFORE Vanilla Sky. Props to the remake but High Honors to the original.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Good Movie

    Abre Los Ojos was a good movie. I enjoyed it but I appreciated Vanilla Sky much more. They had virtually the same script in different languages but Eduardo was much better than Tom. If you saw Vanilla Sky you sont have to see this movie. It was really a waste of two hours to see the same thing again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    ART OF A LIFETIME

    Watching this movie was the most wonderfull experience I have ever had. The person who wrote the script is (in my opinion)the closest to the point of life!Film has a big message and it's very strong. I have to mention also the actors who are a full hit! Eduardo and Penelope are so beautiful!Thank You on this adventure!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Thoughtful Movie, well worth seeing

    If you liked VANILLA SKY, you will love ABRE LOS OJOS. The stories are virtually indentical but although the cinematography in VANILLA SKY is much more appreciated, the acting in ABRE LOS OJOS is far more commendable. What makes this DVD great is the ability to watch the movie with or without the English subtitles. Understanding the Spanish can be difficult at times, especially for those of us who do not hear Spanish Spanish frequently. In any case, this is a great movie.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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