The Wachowski Brothers Deliver a Sexy, Stunning New Thriller, Bound
by Gary Johnson

Go to:
The official Web site for Bound.

After a summer filled with some of the stupidest action movies ever made, along comes a stylish, sexy, white-knuckle thriller that slaps you in the face and keeps you guessing from beginning to end. Bound is an absolute revelation, one of the best action movies on the Ď90s, a super-smart and savvy suspense machine guaranteed to keep you on the edge of your seat.

Corky (Gina Gershon) and Violet (Jennifer Tilly) in Bound.

(©1996 Gramercy Pictures)

Directed by first timers, Larry and Andy Wachowski, Bound evokes equal parts Double Indemnity and Blood Simple as it weaves a lascivious and potent tale filled with steamy sex and enough plot twists to keep everyone dizzy--but at the same time exhilarated.

Bound tells the story of a mobsterís moll, Violet (Jennifer Tilly), and Corky (Gina Gershon), an ex-con now working at Violetís apartment building. They meet in the elevator, and before we know it--with Violet offering seductive whispers and longing for someone to stroke her tattoo--Corky and Violet tumble into bed for some intense, revelatory love making. Or as Corky says afterwards, "I can see again."

Itís love at first heavy petting.

Violet and Corky take a break in Bound.

(©1996 Gramercy Pictures)

But Violet has a problem: her boyfriend. Ceasar (Joe Pantoliano) is 100% Mafioso. He tortures unfortunate business acquaintances in the bathroom, while Violet drowns out the screams by crushing ice in a blender. She dreams of getting away: "I want a new life. I need your help, Corky." And we soon find out Corky is filled with ideas. They hatch an outlandish scheme to grab the mobís money without the mob knowing what happened, but they soon find out Ceasar is much more resourceful than they would have imagined. He knows heís a dead man if he doesnít get back the money, so instead of running, as Violet and Corky had hoped, he quickly envisions a scheme of his own.

As good as the early scenes are, Bound doesnít really take off until Violet and Corkyís plan starts to unravel, with Ceasar fighting like a bloodied pit bull. This is where the plot twists begin and everything that happens is a surprise. Unlike this last summerís action movies, which telegraphed their every plot move, Bound sneaks up on you, allowing the finely-honed characterizations to reveal where the movie will go.

Joe Pantoliano very nearly runs away with the movie. With his hair frazzled and his smile twitching, he confronts his mob bosses while trying to act like everything is cool. Pantoliano captures a perfect blend of composure and raw nerves. Heís a tightly-wound top ready to explode, but he has to hold onto his composure or die. Itís a great performance.

Violet watches some money laundering in Bound.

(©1996 Gramercy Pictures)

Tilly and Gershon shine, with Tillyís soft-spoken Violet revealing a gutsy and resilient side, and Gina Gershonís Corky sporting a bemused smirk thatís infectious. Theyíre a magnificent pair--lesbian lovers who give the mob one helluva ride.

Meanwhile, the Wachowski Brothers and cinematographer Bill Pope keep everyone drenched in shadows, like a good film noir should. The camera swirls through the sets, settling into goofy shin-level tracking shots in one moment and then streaking along a telephone line to follow a call in the next. Larry and Andy Wachowski love to show off, and their exhilarance is intoxicating. These are filmmakers that love what theyíre doing and theyíre capturing their own vision on camera, not the vision of a created-by-committee, pre-fabricated studio conglomerate. This is what moviemaking is all about, and these guys know their stuff. Letís only hope Hollywood doesnít end up crushing their enthusiasm.

They fill Bound with some of the most exciting filmmaking of the past decade. If you care at all about cinema, make sure you see Bound. After sitting through dreck like Twister, The Rock, and Independence Day, I suddenly feel like "I can see again." Thank you, Larry and Andy!

A Gramercy Pictures Release


VioletJennifer Tilly
CorkyGina Gershon
CeasarJoe Pantoliano
Mickey MalnatoJohn P. Ryan
Johnnie MarconiChristopher Meloni
Gino MarzzoneRichard Sarafian
ShellyBarry Kivel
Directed and Written byThe Wachowski Brothers
Produced byAndrew Lazar
Stuart Boros
Director of PhotographyBill Pope
EditorZach Staenberg
Production DesignerEve Cauley
Music byDon Davis
Costume DesignerLizzy Gardiner
Technical ConsultantSusie Bright
Executive ProducersLarry Wachowski
Andy Wachowski