7.2/10
12,923
131 user 66 critic

Safe (1995)

R | | Drama | 30 June 1995 (USA)
Trailer
1:29 | Trailer
An affluent and unexceptional homemaker in the suburbs develops multiple chemical sensitivity.

Director:

Todd Haynes

Writer:

Todd Haynes
4 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Julianne Moore ... Carol White
Xander Berkeley ... Greg White
Dean Norris ... Mover
Julie Burgess Julie Burgess ... Aerobics Instructor
Ronnie Farer Ronnie Farer ... Barbara
Jodie Markell ... Anita
Susan Norman ... Linda
Martha Velez Martha Velez ... Fulvia (as Martha Velez-Johnson)
Chauncey Leopardi ... Rory
Saachiko Saachiko ... Dry Cleaners Manager
Tim Gardner Tim Gardner ... Department Store Dispatcher
Wendy Haynes Wendy Haynes ... Waitress
Allan Wasserman ... Client (as Alan Wasserman)
Jean St. James ... Client's Wife (as Jean Pflieger)
Steven Gilborn ... Dr. Hubbard
Learn more

More Like This 

Poison (1991)
Drama | Horror | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A boy shoots his father and flies out the window. A man falls in love with a fellow inmate in prison. A doctor accidentally ingests his experimental sex serum, wrecking havoc on the community.

Director: Todd Haynes
Stars: Edith Meeks, Larry Maxwell, Susan Norman
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In 1950s Connecticut, a housewife faces a marital crisis and mounting racial tensions in the outside world.

Director: Todd Haynes
Stars: Julianne Moore, Dennis Quaid, Dennis Haysbert
Short | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Karen Carpenter's battle with anorexia nervosa and the cultural influence of the Carpenters in the 70s.

Director: Todd Haynes
Stars: Merrill Gruver, Michael Edwards, Melissa Brown
Targets (1968)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An elderly horror film star, while making a personal appearance at a drive-in theatre, confronts a psychotic Vietnam War veteran who has turned into a mass-murdering sniper.

Director: Peter Bogdanovich
Stars: Tim O'Kelly, Boris Karloff, Arthur Peterson
Seconds (1966)
Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

An unhappy middle-aged banker agrees to a procedure that will fake his death and give him a completely new look and identity - one that comes with its own price.

Director: John Frankenheimer
Stars: Rock Hudson, Frank Campanella, John Randolph
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In 1984, British journalist Arthur Stuart investigates the career of 1970s glam superstar Brian Slade, who was heavily influenced in his early years by hard-living and rebellious American singer Curt Wild.

Director: Todd Haynes
Stars: Ewan McGregor, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Christian Bale
Meek's Cutoff (2010)
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Settlers traveling through the Oregon desert in 1845 find themselves stranded in harsh conditions.

Director: Kelly Reichardt
Stars: Michelle Williams, Bruce Greenwood, Paul Dano
I'm Not There (2007)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Ruminations on the life of Bob Dylan, where six characters embody a different aspect of the musician's life and work.

Director: Todd Haynes
Stars: Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Heath Ledger
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Cozy, a dissatisfied housewife, meets Lee at a bar. A drink turns into a home break-in, and a gun shot sends them on the run together, thinking they've committed murder.

Director: Kelly Reichardt
Stars: Lisa Donaldson, Larry Fessenden, Dick Russell
Repulsion (1965)
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A sex-repulsed woman who disapproves of her sister's boyfriend sinks into depression and has horrific visions of rape and violence.

Director: Roman Polanski
Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Ian Hendry, John Fraser
Fail Safe (1964)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A technical malfunction sends American planes to Moscow to deliver a nuclear attack. Can all-out war be averted?

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Henry Fonda, Walter Matthau, Fritz Weaver
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Margit and her older sister, Katla, flee their homeland after their mother is killed for practicing witchcraft. Needing a place to stay, Katla casts a spell over a young farmer named Jóhann which makes him fall in love with her.

Director: Nietzchka Keene
Stars: Björk, Bryndis Petra Bragadóttir, Valdimar Örn Flygenring
Edit

Storyline

"Safe" has been described as a horror movie of the soul, a description that director Todd Haynes relishes. California housewife Carol White seems to have it all in life: a wealthy husband, a beautiful house, servants, beauty, and a lot of friends. The only thing she lacks is a strong personality: Carol seems timid and empty during all of her interactions with the world around her. At the beginning of the film, one would consider her to be more safe in life than just about anyone. That doesn't turn out to be the case. Starting with headaches and leading to a grandmal seizure, Carol becomes more and more sick, claiming that she's become sensitive to the common toxins in today's world: exhaust, fumes, aerosol spray, etc. She pulls back from the sexual advances of her husband and spends her nights alone by the TV or wandering around the outside of her well-protected home like an animal in a cage. Her physician examines her and can find nothing wrong. An allergist finds that she has an ... Written by David Eschatfische <esch@fische.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In the 21st century nobody will be...Safe.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for a sex scene and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Filming occurred right after the 1994 Northridge Earthquake which heavily damaged large parts of Los Angeles. The threat of aftershocks and damage to filming locations (such as the community center used for the Wrenwood scenes) kept the production team jittery. See more »

Goofs

Although this film was explicitly set in 1987, while Carol is driving on the highway, she passes a burgundy 1992 Cadillac de Ville. See more »

Quotes

Carol White: I don't take drugs or drink or... I don't even like coffee very much. I'm just a total milk-o-holic.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Narc: The Visual Trip (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Slow Water
Performed by Brian Eno and Robert Fripp (uncredited)
Written by Brian Eno
Published by EG Music c/o BMG Songs, Inc., ASCAP
Courtesy of Virgin EG Records Ltd./Caroline Records Inc.
See more »

User Reviews

 
Powerful but understated film with multiple meanings and a bravura performance from Julianne Moore
17 December 2004 | by colettesplaceSee all my reviews

Although it's been almost ten years since filmmaker Todd Haynes (Velvet Goldmine, Far From Heaven) made Safe, the film's only secured cinematic release in Australia in 2004. As Safe quietly satirises the 80s, the delayed release improves it, adding another layer of perspective to a heroine who lives life in a series of bubbles.

It's 1987, and timid California housewife Carol (a young Julianne Moore) is immersed in upper-middle class minutiae – ensuring her couch is the right colour, sleepwalking through a tepid aerobics class, and submitting to her husband (Greg White from 24). But gradually cracks appear in this pristine life, tiredness, unexplained illness…until she is diagnosed with multiple chemical sensitivity. She then moves to Wrenwood, a healing retreat founded by the charismatic Peter (Peter Friedman) – but will this solve her problem? Or is it just another escape? Safe is a very interesting film about a woman so overwhelmed by her environment that she becomes allergic to it. Writer and director Haynes has combined aspects of the disease film (e.g. Love Story) with the psychological thriller – as Carol doesn't know what triggers her symptoms, the audience never knows when she'll have another attack.

While Haymes criticises the New Age belief that illness is psychologically-based, in Carol's case, it's impossible to separate the psychological and physical aspects of her illness. The cinematography shows her dwarfed by her environment and Haymes offers no easy solutions. ***½/***** stars.


19 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 131 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Sony

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

30 June 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Safe See more »

Filming Locations:

Simi Valley, California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$15,830, 25 June 1995

Gross USA:

$512,245

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$512,245
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono | Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.



Recently Viewed