The Eye & r & & r & by BEN KROMER & r & & r & & lt;span class= "dropcap " & P & lt;/span & roblems with The Eye start with the title. It's about a blind girl played by Jessica Alba who gets cornea transplants, so it should have been called The Eyes or The Corneas. But the larger problem is Jessica Alba. She's supposed to have been blind for most of her life yet as the movie opens she describes her blindness in the blandest possible terms: "People say seeing is believing. Me? Not so much."

I want to put a question out there: What exactly is Jessica Alba good for? She has nice puffy lips and a nice non-puffy body, but she's not funny, she's not good at acting, she's not good at anything but looking the same in any role. I understand Hollywood's compulsion to fill its products with beautiful people, but a quick perusal of any magazine rack shows that there isn't a lack of beautiful people in the world. Since any hot girl could do what Jessica Alba does, and odds are decent that any hot girl could do it better, it behooves producers to give one of them a chance instead of wasting parts on someone who doesn't even have the potential to be good.

Next problem: the PG-13 rating, despite the fact that there's nothing in the movie that warrants more than a PG. So the rating is nothing but a marketing device and the MPAA are whores, but that's old news. I was the oldest person in a theater full of teenagers, and to their limited credit they noiselessly sat through it just like me, bored as hell.

How bad is The Eye that it can't even frighten teenage girls? Well, it's about haunted corneas -- that should give you an idea. Alba's new corneas allow her to see some kind of smoky angel of death, who growls and looks like the twitchy bald guy from every Tool music video, and who takes dead souls to their final reward (or something). The angel, I gather, is supposed to be the scary bad guy, but as far as I can tell he's just doing his job. Someone has to clean up all those souls. Yet Alba and her magic eyes are all up in this fellow's business, screwing with the natural order of things. The big climax comes when Alba sees a whole bunch of angels of death flying into a bus that's about to explode. Does she save the passengers? Yes, so there's the end spoiled for you.

An hour after leaving the theater I found out that The Eye had caused me to miss what may have been the best Gonzaga basketball game of the year. Double overtime. At that point the only way I could have hated The Eye more was if it ran over my dog. I'm still so furiously angry that I want to go right to the source.

Of course The Eye is a remake of an Asian ghost story, this time from China. I dearly hope to offend a billion people when I say: "China, I watched your stinking Commie attempt at horror and you, China, are no Japan. You're not even South Korea." And has something broken in my own country where we are no longer able to conceive our own ghost stories? Shame all around. (Rated PG-13)

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