6 user 5 critic

Natural Enemies (1979)

A man hires hires five hookers to fulfill a final fantasy before killing himself and his family.


Jeff Kanew


Julius Horwitz (based on the novel by), Jeff Kanew




Cast overview, first billed only:
Hal Holbrook ... Paul Steward
Louise Fletcher ... Miriam Steward
Peter Armstrong Peter Armstrong ... Tony Steward
Elizabeth Berridge ... Sheila Steward
Steve Austin Steve Austin ... Alex Steward (as Stephen Austin)
Jim Pappas Jim Pappas ... Fred Russo
Ellen Barber ... Anne
John Bartholomew John Bartholomew ... Arthur Eaton
Charles Randall Charles Randall ... Doctor
José Ferrer ... Harry Rosenthal (as Jose Ferrer)
Lisa Carroll Lisa Carroll ... The Madam
June Berry ... Jan - Girl in Brothel
Alisha Fontaine ... Sharon - Girl in Brothel
Patricia Mauceri ... Patricia - Girl in Brothel
Michele O'Brien Michele O'Brien ... Leslie - Girl in Brothel


A successful magazine publisher is frustrated with his dreary job and failing marriage and family life. After failing to find a solution to his problems, he plots to kill his wife and children, seeking advice by disguising his plan as a fictional story for his business.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

User Reviews

Wiping the slate clean.
26 January 2011 | by ElijahCSkuggsSee all my reviews

Natural Enemies aka Hidden Thoughts, based on a novel by Julius Horowitz, is a serious and incredibly intriguing film that begins with a voice-over narration by the Father/Husband (Hal Holbrook) telling us his reasons why he is heavily leaning towards shooting his manic depressive wife (Louise Fletcher), his three neglected children, and then himself. This is a man at the end of his rope, and you realize the film just began.

Throughout the film he speaks of many topics such as monotony, predictability, disappointment, lack of emotion, connection and love. His words and demeanor are at times sullen, blunt, and always feeling as if thought through entirely. You tag along as he visits a brothel, talks with suspecting friends, and as well watch him struggle and overwhelm himself, others, and the viewer with his thoughts and pessimistic stances. You watch the film in a very uncertain manner, wondering if any of his many interactions will have any lasting affect.

Natural Enemies takes all the correct turns when attempting to feel like a true slice of life, and with such great writing and acting, the film delivers a consistently difficult, at times relatable, and always thoughtful story.

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Release Date:

15 October 1981 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Hidden Thoughts See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Utopia See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (TVC)
See full technical specs »

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