Basic Instinct

Research output: Book/ReportBookResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Paul Verhoeven's 1992 thriller Basic Instinct - starring Michael Douglas as a police detective and Sharon Stone as the femme fatale Catherine Tramell - was one of the first mainstream 'erotic thrillers', a film which shifted the boundaries for graphic representations of sex in Hollywood cinema. It remains a significant milestone in film censorship and controversy. In his fascinating study, the first in-depth account of the film, Stevie Simkin explores the unrest and protest that Basic Instinct sparked in the gay, lesbian and feminist communities in the US, incensed by what they saw as the script's homophobia and misogyny .Simkin considers the social and cultural context in which Basic Instinct was made, examining the film's troubled production history, the battles with censors, and its reception. He offers a number of readings of the movie, looking at its representation of bisexuality and the depiction of a 'transgressive' female protagonist. He also focuses on key sequences, including the infamous interrogation scene, and details the cuts demanded by the censors, resulting in different UK and US versions. In conclusion, Simkin considers the legacy of Basic Instinct, and its enduring effect on media representations of the violent woman.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBasingstoke
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd.
Number of pages170
Edition1
ISBN (Electronic)9781137296092
ISBN (Print)9780230336926
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013

Publication series

NameControversies
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd.

Cite this

Simkin, S. (2013). Basic Instinct. (1 ed.) (Controversies). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.
Simkin, Stephen. / Basic Instinct. 1 ed. Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan Ltd., 2013. 170 p. (Controversies).
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Simkin, S 2013, Basic Instinct. Controversies, 1 edn, Palgrave Macmillan Ltd., Basingstoke.

Basic Instinct. / Simkin, Stephen.

1 ed. Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan Ltd., 2013. 170 p. (Controversies).

Research output: Book/ReportBookResearchpeer-review

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Simkin S. Basic Instinct. 1 ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan Ltd., 2013. 170 p. (Controversies).