Edward Lewis (Richard Gere), a successful workaholic businessman and corporate raider in Los Angeles on business, accidentally takes a detour on Hollywood Boulevard while looking for Beverly Hills. He unsuccessfully tries to ask for directions and ends up in the red-light district, where he encounters a sex-worker named Vivian Ward (Julia Roberts), who mistakes him for a possible client. Her roommate and best friend, Kit De Luca (Laura San Giacomo), encourages her to recruit him, though he only wants directions and makes a deal with her to pay her if she shows him the way. Intrigued by her knowledge and wit he hires her to spend the night with him for $300 in his hotel's penthouse apartment, treating her to strawberries and champagne and sharing personal information with her. He comes to trust her as she "surprises" him by flossing her teeth after eating the strawberries (and not doing drugs as he thought she was more likely to do given her profession). They spend the night watching I Love Lucy reruns and having sex.
A retired rock star, Johnny Boz, is stabbed to death with an ice pick during sex by a mysterious blonde woman at his apartment. Homicide detective Nick Curran investigates, and the only suspect is Catherine Tramell, Boz's bisexual girlfriend and a crime novelist who has written a novel that mirrors the crime. It is concluded that Catherine herself did it or someone who is trying to frame her out of spite. Tramell is uncooperative and taunting in the investigation, smoking in the interrogation room and exposing her bare genitalia in front of the officers. She presents alibis and passes a lie detector test. Nick discovers that Catherine has a habit of befriending murderers, including her girlfriend Roxy, who is later shown to have murdered several young boys on impulse, and Hazel Dobkins, who murdered her family.
Dan Gallagher (Michael Douglas) is a successful, happily married New York attorney living in Manhattan when he meets Alexandra "Alex" Forrest (Glenn Close), an editor for a publishing company, through business. While his wife, Beth (Anne Archer), and daughter, Ellen (Ellen Hamilton Latzen), are out of town for the weekend, he has an affair with Alex. Though he thought it was understood to be a simple fling, she begins clinging to him.
Retired CIA field operative Bryan Mills attempts to build a closer relationship with his daughter, Kim, who lives with her mother, Lenore, and her wealthy stepfather, Stuart. While overseeing security at a concert for pop star Sheerah, Bryan saves her from a violent stalker. As a thank you, Sheerah offers to assess Kim's talent as a singer. Before Bryan can tell Kim, she asks her father for permission to travel to Paris with her best friend, Amanda. He initially refuses, but eventually agrees after Lenore pressures him. At the airport, he learns the girls are actually following U2 during their European tour, something Lenore knew but kept from him.
On February 6, 1846, at Paradise Square in Lower Manhattan's Five Points, a territorial battle of hand-to-hand combat between Bill "the Butcher" Cutting's U.S.-born nativist gang, the Natives, and "Priest" Vallon's Irish Catholic immigrant gang, the Dead Rabbits, concludes when Cutting kills Vallon, witnessed by Vallon's young son, Amsterdam. Cutting declares the Dead Rabbits outlawed but orders that Vallon's body be buried with honor. Amsterdam seizes the knife used to kill his father, races off, and buries it along with a medal his father gave him. He is later raised at Hellgate orphanage.
Laura Burney (Julia Roberts) lives in a beautiful home by the beach on Cape Cod with her husband, Martin Burney (Patrick Bergin), a charming, handsome and wealthy investment counselor who is also possessive, abusive, and controlling. It becomes apparent that he has obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD). Laura tries to abide his rules, but suffers under the strain of doing so. One day, Martin believes Laura has been flirting with an attractive neighbor, and he physically assaults her in a jealous rage. The abuse has been ongoing, and started immediately after their wedding. In an effort to escape Martin, Laura plans and fakes her own death at sea in a storm while the couple are boating. Because Laura had deliberately led Martin to believe that she could not swim, he believed she had died once she was lost overboard. However, Laura was able to swim safely to shore, because she had recently taken swimming lessons at the YWCA. Laura secretly returns home, retrieves some clothing and cash she had hidden away in preparation, disguises herself, and leaves home after flushing her wedding ring down the toilet.
Dr. Bill Harford (Tom Cruise) and his wife, Alice (Nicole Kidman), are a young couple living in New York. They go to a Christmas party thrown by a wealthy patient, Victor Ziegler (Sydney Pollack). Bill meets an old friend from medical school, Nick Nightingale (Todd Field), who now plays piano professionally. While a Hungarian man named Sandor Szavost (Sky du Mont) tries to pick up Alice, two young models try to take Bill off for a tryst. He is interrupted by a call from his host upstairs, who had been having sex with Mandy (Julienne Davis), a young woman who has overdosed on a speedball. Mandy recovers with Bill's aid.
The film is set in 1880 in Big Whiskey, Wyoming, where Little Bill Daggett, the local sheriff and former gunfighter, does not allow guns or criminals in his town. Two cowboys, Quick Mike and "Davey-Boy" Bunting, disfigure prostitute Delilah Fitzgerald after she laughs at the small size of Quick Mike's penis. Instead of punishing the cowboys, Little Bill allows them to pay compensation to the brothel owner, Skinny Dubois. The rest of the prostitutes, led by Strawberry Alice, are infuriated by this leniency and offer a $1,000 reward to whoever can kill the cowboys.
Edward (Richard Gere) and Connie Sumner (Diane Lane) are a married couple living in a suburban New York City with their eight-year-old son, Charlie (Erik Per Sullivan). Their relationship is loving but lacking intimacy due to their schedules.
Carly Norris (Sharon Stone) moves into an exclusive New York residential building, not long after the previous tenant, Naomi Singer, falls to her death from her balcony. She immediately crosses paths with other tenants including the handsome Zeke (William Baldwin).
Lorsque la directrice générale de Zenotek, Carol Vanstone (Jennifer Aniston) tente de fermer la branche de son frère Clay (T. J. Miller), il doit rassembler ses collègues et organiser une fête de Noël épique dans un effort pour impressionner un client potentiel et conclure une vente qui permettra de sauver leurs emplois.
A criminologist narrates the tale of the newly engaged couple Brad Majors and Janet Weiss who find themselves lost and with a flat tire on a cold and rainy late November evening. Seeking a telephone, the couple walk to a nearby castle where they discover a group of strange and outlandish people who are holding an Annual Transylvanian Convention. They are soon swept into the world of Dr. Frank N. Furter, a self-proclaimed "sweet transvestite from Transsexual, Transylvania". The ensemble of convention attendees also includes servants Riff Raff, his sister Magenta, and a groupie named Columbia.
New York City homicide detective Frank Keller is a burnt-out alcoholic. His wife left him and married one of his colleagues. He is depressed about reaching middle age and his 20th year on the police force.
In 1888, Mary Kelly (Heather Graham) and her small group of London prostitutes trudge through unrelenting daily misery. When their friend Ann Crook (Joanna Page) is kidnapped, they are drawn into a conspiracy with links higher up than they could possibly imagine. The kidnapping is soon followed by the gruesome murder of another woman, Martha Tabram (Samantha Spiro); and it becomes apparent that they are being hunted down, one by one as various prostitutes are murdered and mutilated post-mortem.
Reporter Rowena Price, under the pseudonym of David Shane (Halle Berry), and researcher Miles Haley (Giovanni Ribisi) are investigating conservative Republican senator Stephen Sachs, who has been having secret sexual encounters with his male interns, despite his publicly anti-gay agenda. The story is shut down, however, when the source clams up and Rowena's editor, a supporter of the senator, puts a stop to the story. The editor also insists she take a vacation and won't take no for an answer.