Open Your Eyes (1997) - Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

Hohum Score



A very handsome man finds the love of his life, but he suffers an accident and needs to have his face rebuilt by surgery after it is severely disfigured.

IMDB: 7.8
Director: Alejandro Amenábar
Stars: Eduardo Noriega, Penélope Cruz
Length: 117 Minutes
PG Rating: R
Reviews: 20 out of 220 found boring (9.09%)

One-line Reviews (157)

Metaphorically, he is the man in his dream in the opening scene -- alone in an empty city of his own creation.

compelling dream .

Delectably unpredictable, the film casts Cesar as a spoiled rich kid and then makes us pity him, as he's accused of a crime he has no knowledge of and suffers grave disfigurement in an accident.

Overall, I feel as if this movie was a bit predictable and could have gone in a different direction with a little reworking but overall it was a solid plot that was enjoyable if watching strictly for entertainment purposes instead of with the intent to analyze.

It's fairly enjoyable and I suppose it also depends on personal taste and preferences in movies.

But still there's something fascinating about Abre Los Ojos, something that makes me place it on a peak where only a masterpiece can stand!

Abre los ojos had the potential greatness of Lynch's one true masterpiece, "The Elephant Man," but instead goes the route of most all of Lynch's other movies in an absurd, pretentious, and unfulfilling means.

Stunning, complex sci-fi .

Vanilla sky bored me to tears, I nearly turned it off before things started to get interesting.

I loved it, both male and female lead were excellent and story/screen play was mind blowing.

On paper, "Abre los ojos" is the predictable story of a young man (César) who has everything in life: he is rich, good-looking, popular among his friends and lucky with women.

A remarkable movie, well filmed, intriguing, deep, original.

Rather than fall into the trap of making it a straightforward dream, the director uses the fancy conceit of artificial perception and Crynogenics to suggest Cesar actually created his own aritifical nightmare out of his past, confusing the past with his new constructed reality 150 years on from his death.

The problem is that 90% of the film is so good that it builds up expectations for a final epiphany that should be just as bizarre, involving, and unexpected.

Perhaps she got tired and bored of doing the same thing twice, which damaged her acting.

The visuals are stunning and the editing is first rate.

And then this movie makes a big unexpected spin.

Just when I had lost all faith in cinema, this film proves that it still possible for intelligent, sophisticated, profound, and very entertaining movies to be made - just not in today's Hollywood.

Its quite thrilling, enigmatic, haunting, etc. The acting is superb, all the actors did an outstanding job.

Well you might be irritated by now with my article and confusing statement.

The ACTORS were consistently engaging.

It's a deranged but wholly compelling climax to a movie which takes one unpredictable turn after another.

I had already seen The Others and enjoyed it and had read good things about Open Your Eyes and one of his other films, Thesis.

Combining Georges Franju 's "les yeux sans visage" (1960)-for the strange poetry which emanates from the mask the hero(heroine in the French movie) wears-,Adrian Lyne's "Jacob's ladder" and what will be LATER developed in "matrix" or "the sixth sense" ,Amenabar creates a disturbing,absorbing and mesmerizing movie.

But I'm interested in this because I'm interested in tricks that storytellers can use to make their stories more engaging.

There's a long and engaging set-up which always seems to be leading you towards a huge revelation as an ending.

The final act of the film is a constant struggle between these two theories that the viewer is only made aware of when they both teeter on the edge of victory.

One of the things that made this movie so good was the fact that I had never before seen the actors, beside Cruz, who is stunning.

Intriguing Perplexity .

The first half hour is riveting, with an interesting romantic setup giving way to a most bizarre world of shame and denial.

A lot of people seem to be confusing complexity with interest.

Its got romance, suspense, surrealism, and science fiction melded together into one entertaining ride.

yeah sure its subtitled, but so what, once you get past that fact, the result is a generally well made movie with an intriguing story, great acting and an atmospheric and tense soundtrack.

There are a few slow moments that weren't needed.

Mind blowing sci-fi .

The movie is at its best when it focuses on the mind of the main character; the psychological aspact of this film is fascinating.

Enjoyable film, and you will never figure out the ending.

It's also more intriguing, more suspenseful, more tragic, more touching, more original, more artistic, deeper and more intense, not to mention it has a very nice soundtrack.

Simple but engaging filming.

I am very excited to see future films of the director, Alejandro Amenabar because between this and The Others, I think his style is very polished and his vision is exciting.

Maybe this story was just a little too convoluted to ever make a thoroughly enjoyable movie out of.

It plays on your mind making multiple viewing pointless but still very enjoyable.

If you enjoyed the story of "Vanilla Sky" but were turned off by the excessive self-centered Hollywood egos, as I was, then "Abre los ojos" may be an enjoyable movie for you.

Increasingly by turns what at first appears to be a simple love triangle story becomes a compelling series of bizarre plot twists: dare you say convincingly when the lead character is dreaming and when he is living reality?

Stunning, at times shocking - and superior to the remake .

Comparing to 'Vanilla Sky', the original is more involving, more intense, more dramatic, more disturbing and more well-done (and not as rushed).

Yet the movie builds strongly on its initial scenes into a complicated reality-unreality scenario where the audience can be transported into this confusing yet compelling universe of events that seem to defy each other, where one cannot know what his real or unreal.

The movie is strongest in suggesting how bizarre the world is, or can become, and in this guise it's certainly worth watching.

Plenty of twists and turns , the strange images deliver the excitement united a thrilling score by the same Alejandro Amenabar , including some wonderful songs such as the song playing at the nightclub when César first arrives is "Rising Son" by Massive Attack, in which the phrase "dream on" is frequently repeated .

The ending is more intense, as César screams increasingly louder as he is about to reach the ground when he throws himself off the building, which makes the scene more horrifying.

Bombastic, boring, and unbelievable .

"Abre los Ojos" is an intriguing and fascinating thriller with a journey to paranoia.

Just because this film is on the slow side does not mean it's bad.

Entertaining from start to finish, the movie begins with some witty banter from the main characters.

Regardless, it was still an interesting and entertaining film for the most part; one that presented an intelligent if somewhat obvious science fiction concept in such as way as to feel fresh, and one that also offered one of the most striking and enigmatic opening sequences ever committed to film.

Stunning, disturbing exposition on the nature of reality .

I felt as if it was a bit predictable if you stopped to question the events that were occurring.

Intriguing and Fascinating Journey to Paranoia .

Personally, I still prefer his later movie, "Nadie Conoce a Nadie" (Nobody Knows Anybody), which I found more suspenseful.

I like the way how the director jumps from one scene to another and is leaving us in confusion.

Alejandro Amenabar has made three excellent imaginative thrillers in a row, and looks like being one of the most potentially exciting directors currently working.

Like Amenábar's other films, this is slow and deliberate(whereas Crowe's version, in comparison, seems somewhat rushed, trying to get to the end as fast as possible, despite being a full half hour longer), and it really works to the films benefit.

Pretentious .

Stunning, maybe a little complicated for some, OPEN YOUR EYES will really make you open your eyes and pay attention.

, David Fincher, etc.), they seem to be full of new and fascinating ideas, and (for our satisfaction), they're anxious to share their imagination with us.

the picture seems to owe somewhat of a surrealistic debt to David Lynch, but it nonetheless manages to be unique, original, and utterly fascinating.

Clearly the major triumph of the film is in blending the mundane with the bizarre, and the truly bizarre, with such seamless transitions.

A script that changes so dramatically you'd think the writer fell asleep during the scripting and woke up the next morning, forgetting what was written, did not review, and came up with a new idea.

The visual imagery is absolutely stunning at certain points.

The fact that Hollywood chose to remake this film as Vanilla Sky is an indication that it may just be worth watching.

Makes you think about how we define reality, what we base love and our perception of others on, the trappings of society and our own minds, etc. And it's not just cerebral, it keeps you on the edge and involved until the end.

Finally, in my opinion , the adrenaline rush I got from this movie was only compared by the one I got from the movie Existenz ,which I recommend to people who liked this one and didn't see David Cronenberg's Existenz.

The story is very gripping, even though the language was a barrier and I had to read the titles, still it was so intense that I watched it all and it haunted me for a while.

Although, I must admit, being from the States the scene of the first dream of Vanilla Sky where Times Square is completely empty was a lot more powerful than that scene in Abre Los Ojos.

The film was made in 1997, I will say may be people only considered it as an entertaining film in 1997.

These ideas are even more fascinating when we compare them to the eventual and somewhat obvious revelation of the plot and the idea of the car crash.

That movie is everything, it's funny, it's sad, it's exciting...

Tom Cruise soon realized that it was an engaging story, which catches the eye of the movie buff.

Maybe it was the pressure and boredom of doing the same thing twice, which affects the performance?

It could have been a compelling piece of pop culture,with traces of Beauty And The Beast and The Matrix and so many romantic fantasies of renewal and immortality, but the movie is so ponderous (despite the superficial gloss and messy twists and turns) and so full of self-regard that the conceit seems mostly like laziness - akin to What Dreams May Come and City Of Angels in supposing that the stuff of great romance can be tweaked through the most cursory evocation of metaphysics and other worlds.

Although I speak a little Spanish, the person I saw this film with does not, and enjoyed it thoroughly.

What starts as a slightly uninvolving love story gradually becomes riveting.

I highly recommend it to people.

Essentially, this is an intriguing melding of two disparate worlds - one real, one imagined - with a blurring of the two somewhere in between.

Very Entertaining Film .

For most of its length, this film is compelling, well filmed, with an interesting and complex plot.

I would suggest watching Vanilla Sky before Open Your Eyes, I think the acting was superior, and the whole film was so, so much more intriguing.

But all in all the movie does have an intriguing story which, if you can wrap your head around it, makes the movie worth seeing.

Somewhat slow, not always as dramatic and engaging as you would hope.

It really was a thoroughly confusing mess.

"Abre los Ojos" is a truly stunning love story, psychological thriller, and science fiction film all rolled into a flawless whole.

A stunning piece of work questioning the nature of reality itself.

As Cesar finally understands the implications (this bad dream is one he himself has invented) the film becomes truly warped and completely unpredictable.

Over all Abre Los Ojos builds to a fascinating and mesmerizing conclusion.

I was so dismally bored after that that nothing could arouse my interest any longer.

Eduardo Noriega (star of Amenabar's previous movie, the taut, suspenseful 'Tesis', also worth a look) is much more believable than Tom Cruise as the increasingly baffled protagonist caught in a never-ending nightmare, and Penelope Cruz's performance here is subtler and more appealing than her reprise of Sofia in Crowe's overblown and self-indulgent remake.

The narrative will keep you on the edge of your seat, with much of the film not making sense, until it fits together at the end.

Then, the eerie feel, the feverish visionary quality; ABRE … is very scary, and extremely suspenseful.

haven't seen "vanilla sky" yet, but if it is anywhere near as good as this, and in english (or even with bigger, slower subtitles) then it's got to be a knockout.

Intriguing .

Both with boring intrigue, full of "mistakes" and implausible and both with very weak and unconvincing performances.

I thinks the main thing is that this movie is unpredictable and there is a point that you don't know where that's going to end with.

It's definitely worth watching.

Pretentious, self indulgent film making at its worst.

Empty .

The first third of the movie is slow, plodding, and full of typical over the top acting with loud artificial, overly dramatic performances usually scene on soap operas, particularly Mexican television.

Perhaps the greatest shortcoming, ironically, is in the more mundane setup.

It slaps you around enough in the first few frames that you have to watch to see where it will go with some seemingly mundane characters.

It was so fascinating.

This is still a film of much merit; but it's so much better when recalling 'L'Appartement' than when mirroring 'Total Recall' and prefiguring (as it does near the end) the empty philosophising of 'The Matrix'.

(last third of the film) This film is intriguing all the way through.

We enjoyed it so much, we rented "Thesis" a couple of nights later.

The protagonist, Cesar, is too vain and self-indulgent to be sympathetic.

This is a really thought provoking film, I paid absolute attention to everything that was going on because of how fascinating the concept of trying to escape reality and enter a better alternative fantasy was played out, the relationship between Noriega and Cruz is great, the makeup to disfigure Noriega's face is terrific, the murder mystery and twists along the way are clever, and you can recognise the mixes of Eyes without a Face and Vertigo, it is a fantastic psychological thriller.

Cameron Crowe's blaring soundtrack in VS, conversely, is a slick pop cliché that detracts, instead of enhances, the experience.

the dialogues are so breathtaking...

Fascinating, well-made and challenging.

When the story catches back it really becomes fun, but then the ending in the Spanish version is too expected in the unexpected way, if you know what I mean.

Which is a real shame as this is such an enjoyable film.

The music also adds perfectly to the scene, adding to the effects of the cameras to show the fragility of Nuria, and the bewilderment and bored of Cesar.

It's an exciting , bizarre film ; skillfully proceeded by Alejandro Amenabar and turns out to one of the most unusual Spaniard suspense movie ever made and certainly one of the most unsettling .

Quite enjoyable movie and outstanding director .

I just cannot see what it is that makes this movie so remarkable; to me, it is just yet another attempt, and maybe one of the least successful, to build a gripping thriller out of the age-old theme of dreams mixed up with reality: what is true, what is not ?

Mind blowing cinematic experience .

But despite the flaws in the climax, for the most part Open you Eyes was a wholly enjoyable film, not once in the two-hour running time did I check my watch or feel myself getting bored, and both acting and directing where first class.

Science fiction provides a means for a writer to experiment with different constraints to those that apply in real life (as, for that matter, does magic realism); but to change the rules three quarters of the way though one story simply isn't on, and the resulting ending is both deeply unsatisfying and trite.

and here is when the film becomes something totally unpredictable.

This plays like a compelling dream that I sensed as a dream before the reveal.

It's the Truman Show genre, the Inception genre, the Shutter Island genre, etc.It's not as strong as the above-mentioned films, but it's still fun to follow the twists and turns on the edge of your seat.

Great, intriguing and original movie .

I'm glad to have seen this original, imaginative, involving and gripping film before watching the America remake.

I love this film, and you will at least find it entertaining/interesting.

A fascinating fantasy thriller .

Really deeply fascinating...

This suspenseful movie starts when the protagonist appears moving by an empty Madrid's Gran Vía, without cars or people .

This movie was absolutely riveting throughout, and it's all told through Cesar's perspective - so the audience is also unsure what's real and what's a dream.

The plot was very confusing at first, because of the film's flashback setting usage on and off throughout.

It is a stunning and unconventional ending.

The ending in Abre los ojos, is much better and more comprehensible than the vague and somewhat pointless ending in Vanilla Sky, which makes the film just a notch better than the star-laden Hollywood remake.

Almost everything Crowe copied, which made this film rather boring at times and which also makes it difficult for me to rate this one.

ABRE LOS OJOSWhichever you chose to watch, the original "Abre los ojos" or the Hollywood remake "Vanilla Sky", this is a great Science Fiction Psychological Thriller and if you like this genre, the first time you watch it you'll often be on the edge of your seat with your eyes glued to the screen waiting for something unexpected to happen: and it will.

But even the original requires extra attention, otherwise it will be even more confusing.

incredibly strange complicated but fascinating story also a great performance of actors in particular the principal actor as a playboy constrained to live with a mask on his face at the beginning ;something intriguing about this movie : the non stop praise of suicide ,seen through the film as a liberation...

While the film is suspenseful enough to watch through once as you try to guess what's going on, it certainly isn't original and "mind-blowing", and resembles more a Twilight Zone episode ("Shadowplay") or the Philip K.

Beautifully shot, and full of challenging, interesting ideas, great style and unexpected twists.

And while I found it a little unsatisfactory in the story, I found it compelling enough over all to be quite affected by it.

Penelope is by far my favorite actress of the recent years and her beauty is breathtaking.

His movies are ludicrous and serve one point- to be pointless.

I definitely want more foreshadowing of the twist but it's still a fascinating turn.

When the movie first started, I thought it was going to be another soppy love story but there a few unexpected twists that follow that make it unlike most movies.

Thrilling and surprising story full of suspense , plot twists , intrigue and excitement .

That's the problem with having seen the remake first because it's very difficult to comment on ABRE LOS OJOS because I knew exactly where the movie was heading when Cesar stepped out of his car and surveyed the empty city scape at the start of the movie .

I love films with a lot of confusion and mystery.

Kind of a tamer "Total Recall", "Eyes" is often an entertaining film with one secret weapon - Penelope Cruz.

For example, the car crash scene is longer and more intense.

And finally,this is one visually stunning product is no less absorbing and haunting, not to mention surprisingly moving.

It just becomes a boring, nearly literal description of how the protagonist has a hard time know what is and isn't real.