Director: Paul Verhoeven
Writer: Joe Eszterhas
Stars: Michael Douglas, Sharon Stone, George Dzundza, Jeanne Tripplehorn
Runtime: 127 min
Genre: Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Released: 20 Mar 1992
Plot: A retired rock star, Johnny Boz, is stabbed to death with an ice pick during sex by a mysterious blonde woman at his apartment. Homicide detective Nick Curran investigates, and the only suspect is Catherine Tramell, Boz’s bisexual girlfriend and a crime novelist who has written a novel that mirrors the crime. It is concluded that either Catherine herself did it or someone trying to frame her out of spite. Tramell is uncooperative and taunting in the investigation, smoking in the interrogation room and exposing her bare genitalia in front of the officers. She presents alibis and passes a lie detector test. Nick discovers that Catherine has a habit of befriending murderers, including her girlfriend Roxy, who is later shown to have murdered several young boys on impulse, and Hazel Dobkins, who murdered her family.
Nick, who accidentally shot two tourists while high on cocaine, attends counseling sessions with police psychologist Dr. Beth Garner, with whom he has had a sexual affair. Nick discovers that Catherine plans on using him as a fictional detective in her latest book, wherein his character is murdered after falling for the wrong woman. Catherine becomes aware of Nick’s past after paying Lt. Nielsen to look into Nick’s psychiatric file; Beth gives it to him after Nielsen recommends Nick’s termination. Nick publicly assaults Nielsen in his office and later becomes a prime suspect after Nielsen is killed. Nick suspects Catherine, and when he joins in her behavior in front of his co-workers, he is put on leave.
A torrid affair between Nick and Catherine begins with the air of a cat-and-mouse game. Nick shows up at a club and witnesses her sniffing coke in a bathroom stall along with Roxy and another man. Nick and Catherine begin to dance and make out at a club. Later, observed by Roxy, they have sex in a bed. Roxy, jealous of Nick, attempts to run him over with Catherine’s car, but dies in a crash when the car goes off the edge of the road. Catherine is saddened by Roxy’s death and reveals to Nick that a previous lesbian encounter at college went awry when the girl, Lisa Hoberman, became obsessed with her, causing him to believe that she may not have killed Boz. Nick identifies the girl as Beth Garner, who acknowledges the encounter, but claims Catherine was the one who became obsessed.
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