How would you expect a woman to deal with being brutally raped? Undoubtedly there are many feasible scenarios – some more predictable than others. The one that Elle presents probably isn’t one you would have come up with. Paul Verhoeven returns to the essence of his earliest international success with Basic Instinct (1992): provoking the audience with female sexual exploration beyond boundaries most directors wouldn’t venture.
Dalton Trumbo (Bryan Cranston) was the highest paid screen writer in Hollywood in the late 1940s before he fell foul of the House UnAmerican Activities Commission. In an atmosphere of cold war paranoia senate hearings were held in which suspected communist sympathisers were grilled and asked to betray others, on pain of prison.
Guy Ritchie based this spy movie on the original 60s TV show, but other than most modern remakes he didn’t transplant the concept to today – it is still set in the 1960s. And it is an ‘origins’ story – ie how U.N.C.L.E. (Unified Network Command for Law and Enforcement) came about. So far so good.
But the storyline…the acting… the cinematography… bah humbug…