Eyes Wide Shut

Merry Christmas fellow movie goers from around the world. Tonight’s Christmas themed review is an unconventional erotic mystery drama titled, Eyes Wide Shut.” Directed by the late Stanley Kubrick (2001: A Space Odyssey, A Clockwork Orange, The Shinning) starring Tom Cruise & Nicole Kidman.

After “Full Metal Jacket” came out in 1987, Stanley searched for his next project. At first, he intends to make a film about The Holocaust titled, “Aryan Papers” with Uma Thurman in the lead role. However, Steven Spielberg beat him directing the Oscar winning historical drama “Schindler’s List.” Since he bought the films rights of a novel called, “Dream Story” in the 60s, Stanley penned a script brainstorming numerous ideas with the story set in modern New York City. Hoping to gain a huge audience, Stanley selected then married couple Tom Cruise & Nicole Kidman as Bill & Alice Harford. It took three years to make “Eyes Wide Shut” spanning from 1996-1999 due to Stanley being a control freak onset.

After Stanley saw the final cut of the film, he stated Eyes Wide Shut is his personal favorite film’s he’s ever done. His next project is “A.I.: Artificial Intelligence.” Sadly, Stanley died of a heart attack before production begin. After attending Stanley’s funeral with Tom & Nicole, Steven took over his pet project which eventually came out in 2001.

Eyes Wide Shut was officially released in 1999. (same year Magnolia came out) It received positive reviews from critics and movie goers alike. Plus, it became the highest grossing film of Stanley Kubrick’s career. Like Mr. Kubrick’s “A Clockwork Orange,” Eyes Wide Shut attracted controversy of its graphic depiction of sexual imagery. I on the other hand didn’t mind graphic sex. I think the media is acting like a bunch of babies not getting the point on what particular film should be catered to families or a mature audience. Regardless of controversy, Stanley’s final film was praised by Martin Scorsese & Roger Ebert.

Besides celebrating the holidays, I wanna share my thoughts on Stanley Kubrick’s final film before Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer” comes out on July 21st. Two days after my birthday. Tom Cruise will reprise his role as Ethan Hunt in Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning. Todd Field’s recent film “Tar” is nominated at The 2023 Golden Globes along with “Top Gun: Maverick.”

Awake & Tired Aspects

Awake: Tom Cruise & Nicole Kidman both did an excellent job for their respective performances.

Other Cast Members such as Sydney Pollack, Todd Field, Vinessa Shaw & Alan Cumming all did a good job for their respective performances.

Cate Blanchett has a role as a masked woman at The Cult’s orgy. Don’t believe me? Google it.

Fun Fact: Jennifer Jason Leigh & Harvey Keitel filmed their scenes. Unfortunately they refuse to reshoot their scenes forcing Stanley to fire them. Probably has something to do with scheduling conflicts.

Stanley Kubrick did a fair job directing his last film.

Cinematography captures in-depth imagery that makes you feel like you’re tagging along with Bill’s odyssey.

The Soundtrack made my spine tingle.

Bill’s surname is a reference to Harrison Ford.

Primary Themes are Marriage, Secrecy, Social Class & Infidelity. Each one’s handled maturely.

The Cult wearing masks must’ve been the inspiration for The Court of Owls from “Batman.”

You might be wondering why is this a Christmas movie? There’s several decorations in the background.

Tired: Pacing is very slow. If you have a short attention span, you’re gonna be miserably bored. It takes an hour and twelve minutes for the infamous orgy party.

A Green Screen effect looks pretty fake. The part when Bill walks in the streets of NYC.

The Final Verdict: B-

Although most critics consider Eyes Wide Shut a masterpiece. I don’t think it’s flawless. Hear me put. Stanley Kubrick’s final film is horrendously bad. Just plain average. If it weren’t Stanley tanking a huge gamble on the infamous orgy party, I would’ve given his send-off a C- for making me feel super disappointed. As a movie critic, I have to give films tough love. Someday, I’d like to see Christopher Nolan direct his own version of Eyes Wide Shut. I’m excited to see Oppenheimer. It’s my number one anticipated film of 2023.

Rest In Peace Stanley Kubrick. Your legacy will never be forgotten. without your involvement in the film industry, my idol Christopher Nolan would’ve never launched a film career.

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