While I was writing my piece on bierasure and biphobia in Basic Instinct (1992) for Bitch Flicks, my partner offered to take screenshots of some of the scenes I wrote about. They ended up taking way more than we needed, so here are a few of my favorites:
What about you, Nick? Nick has male privilege for DAYS. He comes in here with his dead eyes (I’d be dead on the inside too, Mike Doug), like “what about me, the cis straight hero, Nick Curran, detective and red-blooded male.” No one CARES, Nick.
The dialogue in this film is incredible in so much as it’s almost impossible to believe. I don’t know what it says about me that ever time Nick says something completely off base or biphobic or self-important, Catherine’s line was the same as my response that I shouted at the TV.
Ah, heteronormativity, thy name is Nick Curran.
Catherine is a successful novelist, and though the movie never uses the words, she’s also bisexual and polyamorous–and way more experienced, articulate, and classy than he is. Even if she’s probably the murderer. Nick picks her up at the club in his Dad Sweater and Dad Jeans and whisks her away from Roxy, her girlfriend. Nick and Catherine have dull sex. Wow, woman on top with light bondage, that’s some edgy shit right there, Shooter. She is also possibly grinding the crap out of his knee cap because who even knows where genitals are?
Roxy has been watching them, and Nick is all like “Tell me something, Rocki. Man-to-man.* I think she’s the fuck of the century, don’t you?” and Roxy is like “Catherine likes me to watch ugh i hate you bye”
*LITERALLY SAID THAT.
Fresh off this hilariously bad sex scene where Nick thinks he’s hot shit for performing (excruciatingly boring) sex is my favorite Catherine scene. The next morning, Nick attempts to convince an unimpressed Catherine that he is a sex god whose mere presence trumps all past and present sexings of any sort. Bisexual? Ha. Now you’re Curransexual.
Nick: I think Roxy got jealous.
Catherine: She’s seen me fuck plenty of other guys.
Catherine: [making that face you make when you’re listening to a man mansplaining something to you and you’re trying not to scream or laugh]Nick is really one-note and loves to reuse phrases, like the “fuck like minks, raise rugrats, and live happily ever after” line he steals from his buddy Gus. Ayyyy.
And then he just keeps going, asking about sex with Roxy and with Jonny Boz. Dude, CHILL. You are not the fuck of the century.
I get that the film is really pushing the MPAA ratings to the max for 1991 with the sex scenes, but my god, they are so. boring.
Here’s to Gus, the guy with the best line in the whole film:
Break-out character: Gus, who keeps trying to tell Nick to not sleep with a suspect in the most colorful language possible. And then Nick says, “I’ll wear a rubber next time.” DUDE. It’s 1991. STIs are real! AIDs crisis?! COURTESY TO HER OTHER PARTNERS?! Ughhhhhhh. Readers, get tested. And get a yes-no-maybe sheet, for the love.
Content warning: (contains spoilers)
This movie contains a really upsetting rape scene in which a character withdraws consent and Nick just continues to have sex with her–I recommend fast forwarding if you want to watch the other hilarity, but this scene is both unnecessary and triggering. Otherwise: graphic sex, sexual nudity, mansplaining, stabbing, gore, murder during sex, biphobia, bierasure, conflation of bisexuality with psychopathy, Dead Queer Woman Syndrome, lots of smoking, misogyny, rape culture, sexism, bad writing, and dangerous driving.