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Sleeping with the Enemy (1991)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  8 February 1991 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 34,323 users  
Reviews: 107 user | 36 critic

A young woman fakes her own death in an attempt to escape her nightmarish marriage, but discovers it is impossible to elude her controlling husband.



(novel), (screenplay)
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1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Elizabeth Lawrence ...
Harley Venton ...
Sandi Shackelford ...
Mrs. Nepper (as Bonnie Cook)
Graham Harrington ...
Theater Student (as John David Ward)
Sharon J. Robinson ...
Sharon (the Nurse)


Laura and Martin have been married for four years. They seem to be the perfect, happiest and most successful couple. The reality of their house- hold, however, is very different. Martin is an abusive and brutally obsessed husband. Laura is living her life in constant fear and waits for a chance to escape. She finally stages her own death, and flees to a new town and new identity. But when Martin finds out that his wife is not dead he will stop at nothing to find and kill her. Written by Sami Al-Taher <staher2000@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Self-Defense is not murder See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for wife abuse terror and a sex scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

8 February 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dormindo com o Inimigo  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$19,000,000 (estimated)


$101,580,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


One of a cycle of thrillers made during the early 1990s which were set around husband and wife characters. The films include Malice (1993), Deceived (1991), Shattered (1991), Mortal Thoughts (1991), Consenting Adults (1992), Unlawful Entry (1992), Presumed Innocent (1990), Guilty as Sin (1993), Sleeping with the Enemy (1991) and A Kiss Before Dying (1991). See more »


When Laura first goes over to Ben's house for dinner, Laura makes the comment that she likes Classical Music, and then elaborates, saying anything except Berlioz. Berlioz is a Romantic Composer. However, the term "Classical" is commonly used by the general public to refer to instrumental or orchestral music regardless of the time period in which it was actually created. See more »


Martin: You sneaked off inexplicably, need I remind you how I worried?
Laura: No. You reminded me enough the night I came back.
Martin: You're not suggesting I enjoyed that?
Laura: God, no. That would make you a monster.
See more »


Referenced in Being Human: I'm So Lonesome I Could Die (2013) See more »


Written and Performed by Van Morrison
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licesing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

My First Julia Roberts Movie
16 October 2004 | by See all my reviews

Unlike some, I LIKE this lady and this is my favourite film of hers. After watching it for the nth time I was moved to buy the book on which it is based and this is a far more complex affair than the film, which simplifies everything and leaves out several characters altogether. I think Nancy Price did a far better job of studying an abused wife, who never really stopped loving her brute of a husband, than the makers of the film. It depicts Sara/Laura as a far more interesting character than the somewhat insipid Julia Roberts version.

If you have read the book, then some little touches in the film (i.e. - African Violets) become clearer.

23 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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