"Scream 4" Sounds Confusing to Blind Film Critic

A traffic guy is living his dream of reviewing movies without ever actually "seeing" one

By Olsen Ebright
|  Wednesday, Apr 20, 2011  |  Updated 2:47 PM EDT
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Blind Film Critic Thrives

Blind Film Critic

Tommy Edison doesn't need his eyes to review movies.

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[UPDATE April 20, 11:45 a.m.] Tommy Edison hasn't seen one frame of "Scream 4," yet that didn't stop the rookie film critic from giving it "two out of four eyes open."

Edison -- who's been blind since birth -- just posted a video review of the newly released horror film.

On blindfilmcritic.com, Edison delivers his review while seated in front of a bookcase, his jovial manner tempered by his greying hair and blue button-down dress shirt.

"I have no idea what happened the last 20 minutes of this movie," Edison said in the review. "There was a couple of times where the audience clapped and I thought it was over and more things kept happening. I'm completely lost."

While your average film critic can praise or pan visual elements of a movie such as cinematography, lighting, costumes, special effects, Edison is judging the film solely based on audio.

"I don't get distracted by all the effects," he told NBC LA on Wednesday. "I don't know what cinematography is, so who am I to talk? I can pay attention to the story more, and not get distracted."

The video includes a section where the screen goes black and viewers are treated to a completely auditory experience, the blind film critic way. "Not so much fun, right?" Edison asked. "You're a little confused, aren't you?"

"I think it's a different perspective, a unique one," he said. "It's my experience that I want to share with you. It's a perspective you're not going to get anywhere else. I think that's the hook."

For Edison, lack of sight hasn't held him back. Since 1994, he's worked at Connecticut radio station WEZN-FM as a traffic reporter. He's also shopping a documentary entitled "Blind Since Birth." 

"People ask me how the hell I do the traffic? 'You don't even drive for God's sake,'" Edison said. "There's nothing to see in my job. It's all about listening."

Reviewing movies has been a lifelong dream.

"It's a funny thing. We have a couple other projects we're working on, and I just said, 'I'd love to review films. It's something I've always wanted to do,'" he said.

Recently Edison worked with Ben Churchill, a friend, who produced and directed the inaugural video review. After catching the Thursday midnight showing of "Scream 4," the pair worked through the night to create the review.

"I didn't sleep Thursday night. It was rock 'n' roll," Edison said.

The "Scream 4" review is just the beginning. Although Edison wouldn't reveal the subject of his second review, he said it will be released on Friday.

"We just want to continue doing reviews on a weekly basis, possibly more," said Churchill.

Edison will have plenty of films to choose from. In addition to new releases, he asked his viewers for suggestions.

Within a few hours, users requested "Fight Club," "All About Steve," "Pulp Fiction," "Star Wars," "Donnie Darko," "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," "Inception," "Night of the Living Dead," "Die Hard," and dozens more.

As for "Scream," Edison's final word: "Sighted people, I think you'll really enjoy this movie. Blind people, stay home."

[HT: Urlesque]

[ORIGINAL STORY, Posted April 19, 4:19 p.m.]

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