Books and Movies Reviews

Eyes Wide Shut

In Eyes Wide Shut, Stanley Kubrick explores a world of emptiness. He reveals a society of masks with open eyes that never actually see anything. He uses the relationship between Bill and Alice Harford, an ordinary, although wealthy, couple to show the difference between reality and fantasy. Red is a prominent theme throughout the movie as it represents passion and evil. He also uses mirrors to give an actual, unbiased reflection of the characters.
As in many other movies, Kubrick names the main characters with a purpose. Bill and Alice are such everyday names, for everyday people. By naming them with such ordinary names, he is comparing them to the viewer. He follows up on this idea when Bill goes to Somerton and he zooms in on the security camera on the building. Instead of the security camera watching Bill, it's as if it's watching the camera, or the audience.
Kubrick strategically places the color red in places where Bill is "giving in" to something that will lead to his demise. The door to Dominoe's apartment, the Sonata Café, and the costume shop are all covered in red. Each place is like a warning for Bill to turn back, but he continued on. At Sonata Café, Kubrick places a more obvious warning. All along the walls are signs that state "All exits are final." Once Bill decides to explore the other side, he will lose the wholeness of his reality forever.
The masks at Nathanson's house, Dominoe's apartment, and at the orgy in Somerton represent a loss of reality. With the mask on, the characters can do anything they desire because they are hidden and separated from reality. They lose their identity, and become nameless, empty individuals. In Dominoe's apartment, Bill "wears" a mask, as he stops being the loving husband, and tries to re-establish his masculinity by having emotionless sex.At Somerton, the masks allow the people shed all morality, and…


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