Overall Grade: (B-)
A tense thriller that intrigues with a lead character you want to succeed by the time the credits roll.
The 90’s were a great decade for the rise to super stardom for Julia Roberts. Fresh off two successful performances in “Flatliners” and “Pretty Woman” in 1990, Roberts took the starring role of Laura Burney in the thriller “Sleeping with the Enemy.”
Under the control of a dangerously manipulative husband played excellently by Patrick Bergin, Roberts character sees a rare opportunity and takes it to try and escape her imprisoned life.
This was a great thriller for the 90’s and still today is a tense, intriguing film to sit back and enjoy. The script is simple, and focuses on a plot people will generally be interested in. Roberts and Bergin were both great and showed great chemistry with one another making the many tense situations seem that much more realistic. You will immediately be drawn to the characters Roberts plays and will find yourself completely drawn in to root for her success.
The pace was good and the script kept the dialogue relative to the plot without wasting time on subplots that would be left open ended in the long run regardless. Roberts delivers all the needed emotions in her charismatic performance and she was equally matched by the range of Bergin.
He went from charming and kind, to sinister and basically insane the next second. The one thing that held this story back from being much better would have been a slight expansion on the story of how the couple got to their present state. With more detail added to this area of the script there could have been a much better understanding of why and how she lived the life she had.
“Sleeping with the Enemy” is an underrated thriller with many suspenseful moments throughout the well written script. The plot is quickly set and from there it doesn’t take long for the pace to pick up. The 90’s seemed to be the spawn of the ‘erotic thriller’ where sexuality was often used as a tool to over shadow weak writing and creativity. But this was one that relied on believable performances and the building of tension. If you haven’t seen this one and are a fan of Julia Roberts or the genre then you may like what this film will give you.