This poor man’s Children of Men compensates Julianne Moore for her limited screen time in that film by never letting her out of the camera’s sight, but unfortunately Fernando Meirelles doesn’t live up to his side of the bargain.
Too much time (i.e. the majority of the film) is spent in the quarantine facility for the first victims of the epidemic, where too little happens. I don’t know about you, but if I were the only sighted person in a blind world, I would realise that I am the equivalent of a ninja compared to everyone else and do something with it. But Julianne Moore spends her time trying to act as blind as possible so no one will find out, until very late in the game when the movie becomes awesome for maybe 30-60 seconds.
The film is also kind of offensive to blind people by its suggestion that if everyone became blind we would quit using toilets (not to mention specific atrocities). Even metaphorical situations must still be credible on the literal level. Whether an epidemic of blindness is credible is not in question because that is the very premise — it is the consequences of the premise that must be treated credibly. No Country for Old Men and, again, Children of Men are the gold standard of high concept allegory working equally well on the strictly non-metaphorical level.
Blindness shows a few glimpses of promise but it is mostly a failed opportunity: a fertile premise restricted to microcosmic allegory and unhinged from narrative. If you find yourself driving to the theater to see Blindness, just drive on past and pick up Children of Men instead which came out on Blu-ray today. Not only was it the best film of 2006 but it’s the best Christmas movie ever (not to be watched with children though)!