THE FINAL EYE (1982)
Article 3849 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 2-17-2012
Posting Date: 2-27-2012
Directed by Robert Michael Lewis
Featuring Joe Cortese, Tom Clancy, Susan George
What it is: Science fiction mystery
In the future, the last remaining private eye undertakes an investigation for a woman who claims that a hospitalized man that is believed to be her father is actually not; he’s twenty years too young. In order to find the truth, he and the woman pretend to be married artists to infiltrate a private paradise community with a secret.
I can’t get a confirmation of this, but I’m willing to bet this was an intended pilot for a TV series; not only did it not result in a series, but this pilot sat on the shelf for five years before even getting shown on network TV. I’m not surprised. As a potential TV series, the premise is flimsy but not unworkable; however, the pilot itself is pretty weak. It’s not the acting, which is fairly decent, and it’s not the writing, which is passable; it’s the production itself that is at fault. It’s an action/suspense premise with little action and no suspense, at least partially because the whole movie takes a sort of wry comic tone that is at odds with any sense of tension; the movie seems to slowly lope from one not-quite-funny scene to another. It certainly doesn’t help that the theme music resembles the theme from the TV series “Get Smart”; if you’re going to try to conjure up something like that, you’d better be a lot funnier than this one is. In the end, the movie just never becomes more compelling than a half-smile is; as a series, it would have died on the vine. In the end, Donald Pleasence steals the movie if for no other reason than he’s Donald Pleasence, but let’s face it, it really didn’t take much.