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Basic Instinct


Roger Davidson

Basic Instinct
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One of the many Joe Eszterhas scripted sex thrillers, which just happened to rocket Sharon Stone into international stardom. She portrays a seductive suspect in a brutal ice-pick murder case. The detective assigned to the case (Michael Douglas) gets a little too involved with this manipulative femme fatale. Douglas' character happens to be a pretty messed-up dude himself in dire need of therapy. He's a man who is losing his battle against addictions to booze and cigarettes and has an extremely bad temper to boot. Sleeping with his psychiatrist (Jeanne Tripplehorn) doesn't help much toward his rehabilitation. Let's just say, that from the moment Douglas lays eyes on Stone, he gets himself deeper and deeper into trouble as more dead bodies start to pile up.

Well, it's never boring. I'll give it that! But the mystery (if indeed there is really a mystery ) is utterly predictable. You know who it is from the very beginning and the outcome is broadcast loud and clear.that you can't avoid knowing how it's all going to turn out. Plus, it doesn't help much that the characters, like most of Eszterhas' sleazeballs, are incredibly unsympathetic and unreal. This type of film sets up the disaster to come for Eszterhas' and director Paul Verhoeven's next sleazy, erotica tale, Showgirls. The only things good about this otherwise "fatal attraction" film are the sometimes brilliant visuals and Stone herself. She rises above the stereotype of the cold-blooded lesbian, murderess. The interrogation scene, where Stone toys with the male officers' sex drives, is most certainly a classic, which will be imitated and caricatured countlessly for eons yet to come.

My Rating = Two Stars

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