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Howard S. Berger

I thought this also operates as Kubrick's version of Dickens' A CHRISTMAS CAROL, only with the punch-line from Ken Russell's CRIMES OF PASSION summing it all up.

A fitting film for the holidays, I concur.


I have never felt the need to defend a film, people like it or they don’t, but with Eyes Wide Shut it is a little different. The dislike people have for it (some I suspect haven’t actually seen it) has on more than one occasion found myself defending myself for liking and admiring it. The big problem as I see it is that it was very poorly marketed resulting in people who may like it not seeing it and people seeing it and being disappointed.

I like your suggestion comparing Bill’s actions to those in After Hours. I see something different in the movie and its characters each time I see it depending on my own state of mind. I see something reminiscent of Holden Caulfield in Bill.


I think the movie is a metaphor of marriage. Cruise's sexual ego becomes damaged after Kidman confesses to sexual fantasies, about another man. He encounters sexual situations that further shake his already damaged psyche. He then discovers his alter ego, what he might want to be if freed from his conventions, in the form of Nightengale and obtains the password to a place that promises forbidden pleasures. . (How does he get into the mansion? By, falsely, promising fidelity.) The apparent orgy he then attends is, in fact, the metaphor for marriage. The women are anointed, or blessed, by the high priest, then they reveal their sexuality. They choose a man and go off to enjoy all kinds of sexual pleasure. Cruise the intruder is unmasked and told to leave and not to mention what goes on within the mansion. The sexual pleasure is only to be enjoyed within the mansion, or within the confines of marriage. Outside of the mansion, or marriage, sexual pleasure brings about dire circumstances. A hooker dies of an overdose and Cruise visits another, (naively bearing pastries for the prostitute), and is warned off by the possibility of death from disease, the HIV. He is further warned to stop his enquires, into infidelity, when he shows up at the mansion again. He goes home and finds the mask on his pillow. Was this an invitation to enjoy sex within the bounds of marriage with his wife? I've wondered about the ending sequence, and the last word, and its meaning and I think it shows sexual freedom is allowed within the marriage.

Lincoln Barrett

Kim, I was just gonna blog about how Eyes Wide Shut is THE xmas movie and I see your post - bravo, you're spot on in this appreciation of the film. Some things worth noting - how almost every scene has xmas decorations in it, belying the sordid goings on and the opening party is a xmas party, do these people know what xmas is really about? Apparently not when they take their daughter shopping for her own gifts. And in the original script Dr. Bill is seen in a dream in a crucifixion scene. Hes a Jesus figure alright. Merry xmas everyone.

Free Movies

Eyes Wide Shut is something different title. I just gone through this article. It was quite good one. Good Work Man !

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