Notes on Blindness

Synopsis: In the summer of 1983, just days before the birth of his first son, writer and theologian John Hull went blind. In order to make sense of the upheaval in his life, he began keeping a diary on audiocassette. Upon their publication in 1990, Oliver Sacks described the work as 'the most extraordinary, precise, deep and beautiful account of blindness I have ever read. It is to my mind a masterpiece.' With exclusive access to these original recordings, NOTES ON BLINDNESS encompasses dreams, memory and imaginative life, excavating the interior world of blindness.
Production: BOND/360
  Nominated for 3 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 4 wins & 11 nominations.
 
IMDB:
7.1
Metacritic:
75
Rotten Tomatoes:
94%
Year:
2016
90 min
Website
90 Views


Hello. Testing, testing, testing...

Daddy, Daddy...

This is cassette one, track one.

10th of July 1983.

Have we begun yet?

Disembodied voices... 22nd February.

Speaking out of nowhere... 1984.

Disappearing into nowhere.

Thank you very much for the tape.

Everything drifting away.

Waterlogged, immobile.

Hello and welcome to...

A religious crisis... Down, down...

Can't we just go back?

It's a long time ago, isn't it?

Hmm...

How difficult it is to remember

the detail...

Let's think...

We were married on the 1st November

'79.

Well, you were driving, of course.

Well, you certainly weren't driving!

We took off down to...

- We got to Chichester.

- Oh, that was it... Was it?

- Where was our honeymoon?

- The southern edge of the...

- What was it called?

- Began with a C, Cirencester.

Ah! That was it, Cirencester.

That's a long way...

That ghastly B&B!

Was quite the worst place

we've ever stayed in.

I don't remember it being so bad.

- The bed was covered in dust!

- Yeah.

- I'm sure there were bedbugs.

- Well.

Do you remember the way the tide came in?

Right up the main street.

It took the form of a... dark,

black disc...

which slowly progressed across

the field of vision.

Went very quickly.

The doctor said that the eye

was so badly traumatised

from previous surgery...

"All we'll be able to do

is to preserve a little bit of sight."

Of course, you never believe that.

You keep on hoping.

That was the final eye operation.

Yes.

You were just out of hospital

when Tom was born.

He's smiling.

He's smiling at you.

I still had that little bit of vision.

I would see a flicker of a shadow

across the window

as you moved across it.

Yeah.

If I stood underneath

the central light in the room,

I could tell if it was on or off.

The stars had gone, the moon had gone.

I must still be able to see the sun,

mustn't I?

They didn't think it would last long.

Here we are again.

Another part of Imogen Hull's tape.

Er, side two. Now, then...

Imogen...

She was thrilled, you know,

as an older sister, having a little brother.

I don't think she realised

what was going on.

The little drop of the Father

on thy little beloved forehead.

The little drop of the Son

on your forehead, beloved one.

A little drop of the Spirit

on your forehead, beloved one.

There was nobody much around

in the university.

I could hear one of my friends saying...

"You know that John Hull's going

completely blind?"

Stopping and hearing that.

Ah!

Thoughts just came tumbling into my mind.

What about my reading? My research?

What about my teaching?

How am I going to teach?

How am I going to lecture?

Without any notes!

I went up to my office and sat there.

The students will be here

in about five weeks.

Now...

How am I going to do this?

A social worker told me about

all the things they could offer.

Mmm. Your first white cane.

There were special holiday

homes for blind people.

Maybe I'd like to have a dog and...

And she said, "You need a mobility course."

But I said, "No, I'm not doing that."

I haven't got time!

Most people would have made the time.

I was just too busy

keeping up with everything.

Well, you were also stubborn.

You were, sort of, in furious denial.

The only thing I was interested in

was how to function as a blind academic.

That, nobody knew.

We've got...

The Long Surrender.

Autumn Conquest.

I needed to have serious

books recorded sensibly.

Uh... What about anthropology and sociology?

All that was basically available

in the United Kingdom

was detective novels and romantic fiction.

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