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Drama -Erotic

Eyes Wide Shut (1999)

Duration2h 39m
RatingsUK: 18, USA: R (But edited), most other countries: 18 (edited)
Source of storyInspired by a novel “Traumnovelle” by Arthur Schnitzler
DirectorStanley Kubrick
Writers/ScriptStanley Kubrick, Fredric Raphael 
StarringTom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Sydney Pollack, Todd Field, Julienne Davis, Vinessa Shaw, Abigail Good, Alan Cumming, 
RatingsIMDb:  7.4 by 294,708. Rotten Tomatoes: 75%

Elevator Pitch: When Dr Bill Hartford’s wife, Alice, reveals, during a pot smoking session, that she had fantasies about having sex with a naval officer in her past,  his perception that women do not think much about sex seems to be misplaced. His view is further changed when he is propositioned by a woman by the bedside of her dead father. Co-incidentally he meets an old friend who is a pianist, who tells him about a gathering at which he is to perform blindfolded and that everyone there will be masked.  Bill hires the kit and goes along, but during what is a masked orgy his life is threatened. While he is able to escape that is not the end of the affair.

Content:  At the orgy there is a lot of sex, and much female nudity however there is no actual full frontal male nudity. Bill and Alice also get it on more than once. There is some pot smoking and now and again some social drinking. When Bill is hiring his outfit for the party there is an implication of underage sex. Bill wanders the streets of Greenwich Village and almost has sex with a prostitute but does not. The whole film leads up to the orgy which is surreal due to the masks, goes on for a long time and involves rehearsed rituals ending in the female nakedness.

A View: It did not win, or even garner any nominations, for any important awards, and was mostly boring, despite the physical perfection of the young women involved. The theatrical release in America had the actual sex hidden by digitally included people, which must have made it even more unwatchable. I felt that the orgy, supposedly totally secret, involved so many people that secrecy would have been impossible. But, hey, if you want to see a lot of good looking young women with their clothes off, give it a go.

Additional Info: There is a lot of back story. The film holds the record for the longest continuous shoot of 400 days. For more seek out the “Vanity Fair” article.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

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