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Eyes Wide Shut (1999)

R  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller  |  16 July 1999 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 213,802 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 1,488 user | 274 critic | 33 from Metacritic.com

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.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Milich (as Rade Sherbedgia)
Sandor Szavost (as Sky Dumont)
Madison Eginton ...
Helena Harford
Jackie Sawiris ...
Leslie Lowe ...
Illona Ziegler


A doctor becomes obsessed with having a sexual encounter after his wife admits to having sexual fantasies about a man she met and chastising him for dishonesty in not admitting to his own fantasies. This sets him off into unfulfilled encounters with a dead patient's daughter and a hooker. But when he visits a nightclub, where a pianist friend Nick Nightingale is playing, he learns about a secret sexual group and decides to attend one of their congregations. However, he quickly learns he is in well over his head and finds he and his family are threatened. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Cruise. Kidman. Kubrick.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, nudity, language and some drug-related material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

16 July 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

EWS  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$65,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$21,706,163 (USA) (16 July 1999)


£5,065,520 (UK) (22 October 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In order for the film to be given an R rating in the U.S. (as opposed to N.C.-17), some scenes contain computer-generated people in the foreground obscuring some of the more explicit sexual action. Although some claimed this to be a perversion of Stanley Kubrick's work, Kubrick had already proposed the use of computer-generated imagery prior to his death, should the M.P.A.A. deny the movie its desired R rating. See more »


When Bill returns his costume to Rainbow Fashions, Millich tells him the bill is $375. His daughter then comes out and interrupts the transaction. When the Chinese men leave, the transaction has supposedly been completed, but Bill never actually paid. See more »


[first lines]
Dr. Bill Harford: Honey, have you seen my wallet?
Alice Harford: Isn't it on the bedside table?
Dr. Bill Harford: Now listen, you know we're running a little late.
Alice Harford: I know. How do I look?
Dr. Bill Harford: Perfect.
Alice Harford: Is my hair okay?
Dr. Bill Harford: It's great
Alice Harford: You're not even looking at it.
Dr. Bill Harford: It's beautiful. You always look beautiful.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to the staff of Hamleys of London. See more »


References Fear and Desire (1953) See more »


I Only Have Eyes for You
Performed by The Victor Silvester Orchestra
Courtesy of Castle Copyrights Ltd
Music by Harry Warren
Lyrics by Al Dubin
Published by EMI United Partnership Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

An impressive film with a bad marketing campaign
17 July 1999 | by See all my reviews

Eyes Wide Shut is ill-suited for the summer movie corridor. It has no explosions, no running, shouting, or a single gunshot. What it has are long scenes in which characters talk to one another. Slowly and carefully. The problem is that the film is marketed as having white-hot sex scenes and plenty of gratuitous nudity, while it has neither. There is plenty of naked flesh, don't get me wrong, but in exactly the opposite way that the ads make it appear. This is not a movie about being sexy and naked -- it's a movie about how flesh is just another part of being human, so what is all the fuss about? The marketing campaign is misleading, and led to disappointment in the audience that I saw the movie with, who were just looking for some skin.

The tension in the plot and the issues that the film discusses aren't telegraphed to the audience, they're hinted at in the dialog. There is no neat resolution at the end, life simply goes on. You may watch the whole film and think "that wasn't about anything!" Then think about what you've seen and realize it has a great deal to say.

The film is a meditation on sexuality and how it relates to marriage, death, and money. It's a fascinating commentary on modern life, and a rare movie that dares to examine sex as impassionately as any other issue.

The directing and cinematography alone would be worth the price of admission without the social commentary. The sets are an integral part of the movie; they breathe and glow and live. Kubrick was a master director, and he uses long shots and dissolves to great effect. Cruise and Kidman are at their best, and the supporting cast is also strong. It's Kubrick's magic work with the camera that holds the film together.

All in all, definitely worth seeing for the un-uptight. It's possible to watch this film and actually think about it for hours afterward. That's something you won't get with the Wild, Wild West.

310 of 397 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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