It fits her like a glove and is very flattering, but the real takeaway form this scene is that this purchase is not really a gift - he is not interested in whether she wants it or not, this is what he wants to see her in. And the story doesn't handle obsession nearly so well as last year's "Dance With a Stranger," nor is it as scary as the "Collector," nor as compelling as "Last Tango in Paris. If you are watching the film simply for the steamy sex scenes, I think you will be disappointed. Their short intense affair kicks off after a few chance encounters leads to lunch followed by a trip to a friend's houseboat. All in all the set really lends a good backdrop for the film and the characters' story, but also provides great surroundings for the clothes Lyne has defended this questionable treatment of the actress by stating that in order to get Basinger to convey a convincing blend of terror and titillation, he needed her to be truly on edge around Rourke. There are also some very 80's silhouetted sweaters. It is obvious that this is destined to burn out, but the stylish cinematography and the luminous quality of the lead actors make it easy to see through to the end. Not only is he reticent to reveal anything personal about himself at all, but I would imagine that his cold and empty living quarters would give most women the creeps.
The costumes and styling set the tone and provide important clues about the characters and the development of the storyline. The role playing which is such and integral part of the film is undeniably supported by the costumes. Let me count the ways. Although a similar story could have been told almost anywhere, it lends itself well to the persona of John to be a successful businessman in a city like New York, which has been noted to be a place where you can feel alone while surrounded by so many people. There is a pivotal scene in which John demands she crawl on the floor, she is wearing a body skimming black knit dress and has evolved to wearing smudgy black eyeliner and a red lip. It really has a striking resemblance to the vibe of Patrick Bateman's apartment in American Psycho. But the story of submission and degradation never climaxes. I think there is a calculated reason why he does not bring Elizabeth back here in that early scene. Lyne has defended this questionable treatment of the actress by stating that in order to get Basinger to convey a convincing blend of terror and titillation, he needed her to be truly on edge around Rourke. She decides it is time to leave, but oddly enough a bunch of roses sent to her gallery the next day is all it takes to get her to agree to a second date. They are easy to watch on the screen even when some scenes border on ridiculous, and the chemistry is obvious. You feel smutty and depressed for days after this tawdry night at the movies. A series of sordid sexual videos propel Mickey Rourke and Kim Basinger through an angry affair, with time out for some of the world's best-looking fruits and vegetables. All in all the set really lends a good backdrop for the film and the characters' story, but also provides great surroundings for the clothes The neutral palette that both she and John prefer - she in mostly white, taupe, tan, and he in mainly charcoal, grey and black - only accentuate how beautiful they both are. Basinger dons the obligatory garter belt, but the movie only hints at the handcuffs that bind her to Rourke, a sadistic svengali who draws her ever deeper into this perverse relationship. Their short intense affair kicks off after a few chance encounters leads to lunch followed by a trip to a friend's houseboat. And after a while, we're sick of this lip-smacking, finger-sucking, scary-talking fun and games they play. Elizabeth Kim Basinger and John Mickey Rourke are both well cast in this film and are both in the prime of their youthful glow. Creepy and greasy as Rourke has been in past roles and distasteful as his part is here, he still comes off as a rather likable fellow -- whips, blindfolds and ice cubes notwithstanding. Lastly, the playful scene where he has her dress in drag and meet him at the Algonquin for supper is also an important one. I think the real merit of the film is about the shallowness of the characters' relationship to each other: It is not coincidental: Elizabeth gets understandably spooked when John seems to take it as a given that they will have sex there and points out how much she has compromised her own safety by coming to this remote location with him - a veritable stranger. But it's not even that sexy. By my count, including the time under the drainpipe in the alley, the rape on the dining room table, and not counting her masturbation scene, there are seven sex scenes. And the story doesn't handle obsession nearly so well as last year's "Dance With a Stranger," nor is it as scary as the "Collector," nor as compelling as "Last Tango in Paris.
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