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83 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Craig Sheffer, Sheryl Lee, Terence Stamp and Spalding Gray star in this audaciously honest look at sexual intimacy and emotional risk. On his wedding day, Joseph (Craig Sheffer) nervously admits thathis wife (Sheryl Lee) is not quite like other women. But his beautiful bride is more than just the "impulsive, compulsive, obsessive" woman he thinks he knows. And when Joseph discovers she is hidingtroubling secrets, it sends them both on a sexual odyssey that will either destroy or redeem their relationship. Erasing all boundaries between sex, love and commitment, "BLISS may be one of the mostdaring and explicit films ever made." (William Arnold, Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

It may not be a great movie, but Bliss could be one of the greatest marriage-boosters ever filmed. This curious drama fits into the too-familiar form of the "therapy movie," but it's acted with intensity by a committed (and rather brave) trio. Craig Sheffer plays an uptight Seattle husband who discovers his neurotic wife (Sheryl Lee) visiting a radical doctor (Terence Stamp) who has sex--therapeutically--with his patients. After briefly flipping out, Sheffer finds himself buying into the doctor's remedies for a sexual and emotional make-over. The silky-smooth Stamp is perfectly cast: with his enthusiasm for chakras and fine cigars, the doctor is both spiritual guru and the kind of man who reads Playboy. The film veers into ridiculousness at times, yet there is something intriguing about its how-to frankness. Home viewers may find themselves embarrassed and maybe just a little bit liberated. --Robert Horton

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Casey Siemaszko, Spalding Gray, Craig Sheffer, Terence Stamp, Sheryl Lee
  • Directors: Lance Young
  • Producers: Allyn Stewart
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French, Japanese
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: February 11, 2003
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007L4OD
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,867 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Bliss" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

64 of 67 people found the following review helpful By Blake the Movie Nerd on March 4, 2005
Format: DVD
Joseph and Maria are about to be married. They are riding to the wedding chapel in separate limousines-black for him, white for her, of course. Joseph rides with his best friend, Tanner, confiding all those last minute wedding day jitters. Maria rides with her parents, feeling a little nauseous from her nerves. Her mother warns her not to get any vomit on her dress. They arrive at the chapel, and all that nervous tension fades when they look into each other's eyes at the altar. Everything seems just normal for this couple at the precipice of their life together.

At first.

Seven months later, Joseph and Maria are already feuding over obsessive behaviors, emotional disconnection, inadequate bedroom performance, and an unwillingness to start a family. There's trouble in paradise, and just when things couldn't get any worse, it appears as if Maria is seeing a local sex therapist by the name of Balthazar. This is what every man dreads: Not only is his wife sleeping with another man, she's paying him for it. Fantabulous.

So far, aside from the quick pace and attention to detail, "Bliss" seems geared to become a formulaic romance story about a troubled newlywed couple. But it is when Joseph and Balthazar first meet that the film shows its true colors, and becomes one of the most honest, emotionally wrenching films ever made about love, sex, and abuse. It strips us of the awareness that we are watching a movie as we become completely engrossed in these lives we care so much about.

As Joseph agrees with Balthazar that traditional therapy is not the answer to his wife's many psychological troubles, the heart of the film becomes the discussions between the two men.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By T. Dierkens on August 4, 2004
Format: DVD
One of the best movies about love and marriage I've ever seen. The raw sexual energy jumped off the screen. Just when you think you know what the movie is about and where it's going, it takes you into a more intimate place, the minds of the two married people. Craig Sheffer is excellent and plays his part like a fine instrument. He has unbelievable potential as an actor. Sheryl Lee lays herself bare as she allows us to really know her character. Terrance Stamp was so convincing I thought he was a therapist through the entire film. Lance Young did a phenomenal job directing and he should have won some kind of an award. This is a movie that married people should watch together, without any distractions. It's a must-see.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Michael on April 7, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
Like other reviewers I also picked out this video because of my respect for Siskel & Ebert's good taste. It turned out to be one of the best videos I have ever watched. The acting is good and the story flows well. Most of all the movie works and is very meaningful.
Some people watch movies to be entertained. I watch movies not only to be entertained but also to connect with ideas. This movie does it for me. The therapeutic ideas discussed comes from Eastern philosophy and is pretty authentic. The title refers to spiritual bliss and not sexual bliss. The social problem that's at the heart of the theme is very meaningful. There has been and there still is a lot of sexual abuse of children in our society.
This movie is not a flick and has nothing to do with gratuitous sex. It is about the love that one person can have for another and how partners can heal one another. It you initially laugh at this concept I suggest you do a bit of research into Jungian psychology and Vedic philosophy. Popular tastes in movies can be very superficial - this movie is not superficial. While it is not an epic it is a very well-executed treatise on an important topic that needs to be brought to light. I give it all 5 stars.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By P Stockwell on January 12, 2005
Format: DVD
This movie is moving drama that explores the relationship of a young married couple just on the edge of crisis. Sheryl Lee is convincing in her role as Maria, the paranoid self-critical wife. Joseph, portrayed by Craig Sheffer (in his best role since "Norman Maclean" in River)is intense and loyal to Maria, although he has difficulty getting through to her, and knowing how to help his deeply troubled wife because Maria is dealing with issues buried deeply from childhood. Terrence Stamp, is wonderful as the colorful therapist "Balthazar", and the acting between the three main characters is complementary. Joseph learns more about himself as a man and as a husband through the course of the film, that he begins to understand the meaning of unconditional love, even if it means he might lose Maria. Great movie, raw emotion...why isn't Craig Sheffer in more roles like this!?
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Blake Kleiner on December 18, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
I'm not sure what I expected when I rented this film. I had never heard of it before, and the only reason I had for renting was the praise from Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert on the front of the box. The movie starts off at a chaotic pace, but then begins to develop a rhythm, which I take to be part of its message. It's an amazing movie: One of my all-time favorites. I couldn't believe how utterly absorbing this movie was. It's funny, romantic, exotic, touching, and even tragic when it is learned that one of the characters has suffered from severe sexual abuse. Terence Stamp gives a performance that should've won him an Oscar. He's fantastic, and the two leads, Sheffer and Lee are also terrific. The movie is an experience unlike any I've had before, watching a film. I couldn't take my eyes off it. I hadn't been so into a movie since the first time I saw "American Beauty." This movie isn't for the faint of heart, though, I must warn you. It isn't so much explicit about the topic of sex as it is blunt and straight forward. Amazing...
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