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X -- the Man with the X-Ray Eyes (Widescreen) (Sous-titres français) [Import]
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X - The Man With The X-Ray Eyes
"Only the gods see everything," cautions one scientist as Dr. James Xavier (Ray Milland) experiments with a formula that will allow the human eye to see beyond the wavelength of visible light. "I am closing in on the gods," he responds with the hubris that is doomed to destroy his overreaching ambition. A mix of Greek tragedy and sci-fi potboiler, Roger Corman's X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes (simply identified as X in the eerie, odd opening credits) is a familiar tale of a scientist who risks everything to explore the unknown and is finally driven mad by, literally, seeing too much. Peeping through the clothes of comely women is all good adolescent fun until the gift becomes a nightmare as his sight rages out of control. The possibilities suggested in the hints of addiction and inconsistent bouts of megalomania remain tantalizingly unexplored in the unfocused script, and Corman's cut-rate special effects are often more hokey than haunting (the "city dissolved in an acid of light" that Xavier poetically describes becomes fuzzy photography through a series of color filters). Don Rickles offers a venal turn as a scheming carnival barker turned blackmailing con man, and Diana Van der Vlis is understanding as a sympathetic scientist who tries to rescue Xavier from his spiral into tortured madness, but in the tradition of Greek tragedy, he is doomed to be destroyed by the very gifts he desires.
MGM's widescreen disc also features commentary by director-producer Corman. --Sean Axmaker
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Top Customer Reviews
A warning about scientific hubris is given at the very beginning of the film. Is he challenging the gods? At the film's closure he sees through to the light beyond the vast darkness of space. He sees a cosmic eye that sees all and knows all. This element might be lost on the casual viewer. This distant eye sees Dr. Xavier (Milland) and knows he is watching back. This proves too much for Dr. Xavier. While we might know God by faith, represented by the people in the last scene's revival tent, the Old Testament tells us that no one can see the face of God and live. The temptation from the serpent in the garden is realized, "you will become as gods." It was a lie in the beginning and it is still a lie. We are convicted as weak and sinful men and women.
Dr. Xavier says that he has not come to be saved, but to tell what he sees. He becomes a prophet, so to speak.Read more ›
The special effects, for the year and the limited budget, are not that bad. They did an acceptable job of conveying what Dr. Xavier was seeing, and the physical transformation of his eyes in the last half of the film is well-done. It's a shame that the movie didn't go into more detail on the "object" (no spoilers here!) that he sees at the limits of his vision. That was a very interesting plot point and could have provided even more weirdness.
As a long-time fan of The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits, I certainly recommend this film. The only problem I have with it is the ending. I truly want to believe that the rumor regarding the deleted final line of dialogue is true. Even if it's not, I think Corman and MGM should have played along and tacked on a dub during the fade-out, especially for this DVD edition. The ending, as it is, is chilling but lacking, and it's too abrupt. Adding the infamous deleted line would add an entirely different scope to this film.
Most recent customer reviews
Roger Corman struck gold with this film. Ray Milland plays a dr. who develops special drops which allow him to see the ultra-long spectrum, i.e. x-rays. Read morePublished on April 12 2002
Ray Milland stars as Doctor Xavier, a dedicated scientist searching for a better x-ray. He finds it, but he also finds that light isn't all it's cracked up to be. Read morePublished on Nov. 29 2001 by Jan Strnad
If you take X: THE MAN WITH X-RAY EYES literally, you probably won't like it. Scientific implausibility, a melodramatic plot, and histrionics from some minor players will turn off... Read morePublished on Oct. 10 2001 by Michael R Gates
An engaging little thriller, but slightly marred by the abruptness of its "shock" ending. Excellent image, however, and a fair amount of extras for a discount DVD.Published on Sept. 4 2001 by Joseph P. Menta, Jr.
This is a classic film across the board produced and directed by Roger Corman. Corman brilliantly brings a lot of that 50's cold war paranoia that found its way to the screen and... Read morePublished on Sept. 3 2001 by hille2000
This is what storytelling is about - and it proves the possibilities of the SF genre: While mainstream dramas often sacrifice their subject to public taste by softening it or going... Read morePublished on Aug. 31 2001 by RK, Germany
Produced and directed by Roger Corman, it is still a shame to see a fine actor like Ray Milland wind down a career with a film like this. Read morePublished on June 11 2001 by gobirds2
Imagine a surgeon being able to remove a tumor without having to look at an xray. Dr Xavier (Ray Milland) develops eye drops which allow him to do this. Read morePublished on June 9 2001 by Wil-n-Tally
Yep the same director (Roger Corman) that brought you [Attack of the Giant Crab Monsters (1957) ASIN: 6304963084] now brings you to new depths of depravity. Read morePublished on May 29 2001 by B. Chandler
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