- Actors: Michael Douglas, Sharon Stone, George Dzundza, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Leilani Sarelle
- Directors: Paul Verhoeven
- Producers: Alan Marshall
- Format: PAL
- Language: English
- Subtitles: English
- Audio Description: English
- Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
- Number of discs: 1
- Classification: 18
- Studio: Studiocanal
- DVD Release Date: 15 Sept. 2008
- Run Time: 122 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (152 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B001AOHPTO
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,948 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
Basic Instinct [DVD]
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When detective Nick Curran (Michael Douglas) is assigned to investigate the case of a rock singer murdered with an ice pick, he can't help but notice the similarity between the death and a scene in the latest book by the singer's novelist girlfriend Catherine (Sharon Stone). She insists that she is being framed, but as Nick slips into a torrid affair with her, she begins to look increasingly guilty.
With more than a decade of cinema in Basic Instinct's wake it's fascinating to look back at just how influential Paul Verhoeven's "erotic thriller" has been. The director's endless fight with censorship and unwillingness to kowtow to social mores meant his movies became notorious for graphically depicting sex and violence while pushing contemporary boundaries of taste. This whodunit about a bisexual femme fatale (Sharon Stone in a career-best performance) caused an enormous furore on its release; but after years of generally inferior imitations there's not much in it that seems quite so shocking now. It's perhaps best appreciated in retrospect more for its Hitchcockian style than the steamy sex.
On the DVD: one of the most welcome elements of the disc is an acknowledgement of the film's own influences--from Hitchcock's Vertigo to Verhoeven's own The Fourth Man. The print is far superior to the previous release, looking magnificent in 1:78.1. Jerry Goldsmith's Oscar-nominated score sounds terrific in either 5.1 or DTS, as does Verhoeven's thick accent on the first commentary track alongside then Director of Photography Jan De Bont (Speed), who together reminisce on locations and manipulating their actors' performances. A second commentary from feminist critic Camille Paglia is a brave way of putting paid to the gay/feminist community uproar. There are some standard inclusions (trailer, production notes, photo gallery etc) but far more interesting are two mini-documentaries; "Cleaning Up Basic Instinct" shows how and why the TV version was so dull, while "Blonde Poison" focuses on the film's making and marketing. Finally, there are three storyboard comparisons and nine minutes of screen tests for Stone and Tripplehorn. This is the definitive release of an oft-cited modern classic. --Paul Tonks --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.