Based on Alejandro Amenábar's successful Spanish film, Open Your Eyes, Tom Cruise stars as David Aames, a business executive with it all - great job, flash apartment and Julie Gianni (Cameron Diaz) who's always ready for his attentions. Then, he meets Sofia Serrano (Penélope Cruz) and he finds true love. But the besotted Julie seeks revenge and, while she and David are in her car, she crashes at speed, killing herself and disfiguring him.
Now, wearing a mask and psychologically as well as physically scarred, he must try and re-build his life through the help of psychologist Curtis McCabe (Kurt Russell). But he keeps having disturbing visions and embarks on a journey to discover the truth behind his old and new lives.
Cruise, who worked with Cameron Crowe on Jerry Maguire , proves himself an actor of consummate skill for a role which could easily have invited a histrionic performance - instead, he knows less is more and his tortured performance is riveting. The two female leads are equally commanding, retaining the air of ambiguity and mystery necessary to the plot. And cinema audiences further benefited - as part of the deal of selling the rights to Cruise, Amenábar was offered a chance to direct in Hollywood - the result was The Others.