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Eyes wide shut - Stanley Kubrick, Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Doctor William Harford (Tom Cruise) plunges into an erotic foray that threatens his marriage - and may even ensnare him in a lurid murder mystery - after his wife Alice's (Nicole Kidman) admission of sexual longings. As the story sweeps from doubt and fear to self-discovery and reconciliation, Stanley Kubrick orchestrates it with masterful flourishes. Graceful tracking shots, controlled pacing, rich colours and startling images: bravura traits that make Kubrick a filmmaker for the ages are here to keep everyone's eyes wide open.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Eyes wide shut image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film erotic thriller mystery sex club

Persons of interest

  • Tom Cruise .... Dr William "Bill" Harford
  • Nicole Kidman .... Alice Harford
  • Madison Eginton .... Helena Harford
  • Jackie Sawiris .... Roz
  • Sydney Pollack .... Victor Ziegler
  • Leslie Lowe .... Illona Ziegler
  • Peter Benson .... Bandleader
  • Todd Field .... Nick Nightingale
  • Sky Dumont .... Sandor Szavost
  • Louise J Taylor .... Gayle
  • Stewart Thorndike .... Nuala
  • Randall Paul .... Harris
  • Julienne Davis .... Amanda "Mandy" Curran
  • Lisa Leone .... Lisa
  • Kevin Connealy .... Lou Nathanson
  • Marie Richardson .... Marion Nathanson
  • Arthur Schnitzler .... Author: Traumnovelle
  • Frederic Raphael .... Screenwriter
  • Stanley Kubrick .... Screenwriter
  • Stanley Kubrick .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

I'm not entirely sure about Eyes wide shut.

On the one hand Eyes wide shut is a film about mind games between a husband and wife. On the other hand it's about a sex club mystery. On the other hand it's about life in New York. On the other hand it's about the breakdown of a family unit. That's a lot of hands.

Somewhere in amongst all those sticky fingers there's a story about a boring man on a voyage of self-discovery (that's Tom as William Harford) but it is lost beneath the waves of sexuality and intrigue. While Tom's performance is admirably subtle he drowns in the film's indulgences. That's the fault of Stanley Kubrick, the director from hell. The gritty reality of a marriage breakdown is undermined by the blatantly theatrical lighting. The protagonist's examination of his own passive sexuality is undermined by the super secret sex club.

Likewise, Nicole's urban housewife aches for something more than her weakling husband can provide but never examines this aspect of herself. A drunken flirtation with a charming foreigner leads to nothing. Jealousy over her husband's drunken flirtation with a pair of bimbos leads to nothing. Eyes wide shut is ultimately a film about people who do nothing with their lives and regret it ever after.

On the plus side there are a lot of nudie pics of Nicole and other sexy babes, and even one semi-nude pic of Tom (as in if the camera tilted any further down you'd see what he had for lunch). Those with hyperactive imaginations might find the exclusive mystery sex club with people wandering around in masks and capes watching other people have sex a bit of a turn on, too.

All in all this is not a must see movie but it's ok for a Saturday night with the boyfriend or girlfriend (or both).

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: English
  • Interviews with Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Steven Spielberg
  • Languages: English
  • Subtitles: English, Arabic, Romanian, Bulgarian, English captions
  • TV Trailers: Combo and Jealousy

Security censorship classification

R 18+ (Medium level sex scenes)

Surveillance time

153 minutes (2:23 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

DVD rental: 3 September 2001

Cinema surveillance images

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