Writer: Stanley Kubrick, Frederic Raphael (Screenplay) Arthur Schnitzler (Novel)
Starring: Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Sydney Pollack, Marie Richardson, Rade Serbedzija, Todd Field, Vinessa Shaw, Sky Du Mont
Plot: A New York City doctor, who is married to an art curator, pushes himself on a harrowing and dangerous night-long odyssey of sexual and moral discovery after his wife admits that she once almost cheated on him.
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Very Intense Thriller
Story: Eyes Wide Shut starts as Dr William Harford (Cruise) and his wife Alice (Kidman) attend a high society party hosted by Victor Ziegler (Pollack). At the party, Alice is wooed by a rich man at the party while William is almost seduced by two beautiful models before covering up an incident for Ziegler.
The next night the two find themselves arguing about what happened at the party which leads to the revelation that Alice almost cheated on William once before during the marriage. Wondering the streets after helping a patient he visits his old friend Nick Nightingale (Field) who is a pianist at selective parties which gives William a chance to explore a sexual underworld putting his own life in danger in the process.
Thoughts on Eyes Wide Shut
Story – When you look into this story, this is an erotic mystery thriller that shows what happens when you start to question you own marriage by going into the sexual underworld. We see how when William questions his own position what he tries puts not only his own life but everyone he knows life in danger in what feels like a cult heavy story of the rich and famous society. To think this film is over 2 and half hours long is amazing because it never seems to drag which when you try to simplify this story it sounds like an easy hour and half film.
Mystery/Thriller – The mystery in this film is created once we are left to wonder just what William has gotten himself into, who are these people, why are the people he knows changing after than night, we get plenty of questions that lead to the thrilling side of the story that just keeps us guessing throughout.
Characters/Performances – William is the almost betrayed husband seeking something for his own desire like what his wife did but what he finds becomes he need to cover up his own action to protect his family. Every other character does just feel like somebody from within the mysterious cult that is following William. Performance wise this is brilliant from both Cruise and Kidman with everyone else give great performances for their few scenes.
Settings – The streets of New York show just how lost in his life William is as the houses he finds himself in are all expensive houses, hotels or mansion to show how easily he could become part of this world.
Final Thoughts – I can see why people did enjoy this one and you can see just how brilliant Kubrick was as a director because each scene is filled with tension with excellent use of music. I didn’t enjoy this one that much even though I did think it was made so well with brilliant performances throughout.
Overall: Masterfully made movie that just wasn’t my cuppa tea.