At the time of its 1999 release, director Stanley Kubrick’s final film felt a bit embarrassing: hardly a worthy career swansong (as it soon turned out to be). The film follows Alice (Kidman), wife of well-to-do doctor William Harford (Cruise), who, after a swanky Manhattan party, confesses to fantasising about a naval officer. Haunted by visions of Alice with another man, William embarks on a long dark night of the soul during which he's repeatedly confronted by sexual temptation.
Nevertheless, despite its initial tepid response, the movie has grown in the intervening years. Glacially paced dialogue, faked Manhattan locations and that banging piano key all contribute to the faint, unmistakable air of a waking dream. Thematically, Kubrick was always about insiders and outsiders, and ‘Eyes Wide Shut’, with its orgy passwords and Cruise-and-Kidman marital alienation, fits right in.