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At First Sight (1999)



Average Rating: 5.2/10
Reviews Counted: 37
Fresh: 12 | Rotten: 25

Interesting premise, but too long and conventional.


Average Rating: 5.1/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 6

Interesting premise, but too long and conventional.



liked it
Average Rating: 2.9/5
User Ratings: 19,475

My Rating

Movie Info

When New York City architect Amy Benic falls in love with blind, charismatic masseur Virgil Adamson, she convinces him to undergo experimental surgery that will allow him to see the world as she sees it -- in all its chaotic, colorful glory. In this new, exciting time together, they soon learn that all gifts come with a price and vision is comprised of a multitude of senses.


Drama, Romance

Steve Levitt, Oliver Sacks, Irwin Winkler, Rob Cowan

Apr 27, 1999


Watch It Now



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All Critics (63) | Top Critics (16) | Fresh (12) | Rotten (25) | DVD (7)

Most love scenes seem forced in 'At First Sight,' and the background music manipulates emotions without a trace of restraint.

May 9, 2009 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Kilmer registers little emotion aside from a silly grin he perpetually wears throughout the film.

May 3, 2009 Full Review Source:

At first sight this film is terrible. At second sight, it's even worse.

April 11, 2003
Juicy Cerebellum

At First Sight, at second sight, at third sight - it doesn't matter how many times you look. This movie never decides what it wants to be.

August 16, 2002 Full Review
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)

Though derived from a true story chronicled by Dr. Oliver Sacks in his 1996 book "An Anthropologist On Mars," "Sight" always seems closer to soap opera than case study.

June 21, 2002 Full Review Source: Kalamazoo Gazette
Kalamazoo Gazette

Com o perdão do trocadilho, era melhor não ter visto este filme.

May 31, 2002 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

A romantic drama with insights into seeing with the heart and not trying to control the other person.

March 3, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

The two leads have never been more appealing.

February 6, 2002 Full Review Source: Matinee Magazine
Matinee Magazine

It's OK. It should not be fiscally encouraged, however. It's the greatest sin of Hollywood - competent but forgettable filmmaking.

June 14, 2001 Full Review

Regrettably plays more like a soap opera than a real-life story.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

At First Sight contains the restoration of sight to a blind man, but is more interested in the romance between Kilmer and Sorvino.

January 1, 2000
Reel Film Reviews

A wintry, truth-based, Charlyesque tale of star-crossed lovers about the titular sense lost, regained, and then lost again, i.e., double-negative-nonsense.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Nitrate Online
Nitrate Online

Since January is usually the time of year that is known as the dumping ground from bad movies, At First Sight comes as a refreshing and sophisticated change of pace.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

...a movie that allows us to view familiar landscapes with refreshment and open-mindedness...

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

Audience Reviews for At First Sight

It is an interesting observation that even if your eyes can see, you have to learn to see. The love story angle is a bit predictable.
April 20, 2014

Super Reviewer

An original film that raises some interesting questions about perception. I can't help but think that the love story side of it gets in the way somewhat when really all they needed to do was concentrate on the main storyline, which in the end isn't really explored thoroughly enough for my liking. A pretty decent film all the same.
January 28, 2010

Super Reviewer

I have no idea why Val Kilmer tried to pretend he was Batman....when it's obvious this is what he should be doing. Great work by him. A sad story. And a great Steven Weber stealing the show....that guy is gold
September 9, 2009
Martin Sahlin

Super Reviewer

I really found myself to enjoy this little film. Very neat.
December 31, 2008

Super Reviewer

    1. Virgil Adamson: As a blind man, I think I see a lot better than when I as sighted...because I think we don't really see with our eyes. I think we live in darkness when we don't really see what's real about ourselves.
    – Submitted by Frances H (23 months ago)
    1. Phil Webster: Virgil, you can see a lot, but none of that matters if you lose sight of what you want.
    – Submitted by Frances H (23 months ago)
    1. Virgil Adamson: Seeing sucks.
    – Submitted by Frances H (23 months ago)
    1. Phil Webster: Basically, your eyes work, but you brain hasn't learned to process the information. You are mentally blind.
    – Submitted by Frances H (23 months ago)
    1. Jennie Adamson: When there's something you've adapted to, accepted, you go and change that without knowing the consequences?
    – Submitted by Frances H (23 months ago)
    1. Amy Benic: Have you ever wondered what it would be like to see?
    2. Virgil Adamson: Sure. Like,uh, if there's life on Mars, or whether or not the aliens built the Pyramids.
    – Submitted by Frances H (23 months ago)
View all quotes (6)

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