We all have to start somewhere in life and work, just as even an extraordinary pair of directors like Lana and Lilly Wachowski had their cinematic debut with this intriguing movie in 1996, Bound.
It all begins with tough, lonely Corky getting out of jail, penniless and friendless, accepting a menial maintenance job in a small suburban apartment building.
She gets by doing all sorts of work, from painting walls to fixing plumbing; still her first assignment is to renovate an apartment whose tenant has recently moved out.
Conveniently, Corky also sleeps in this apartment, so she makes the acquaintance of her elegant and mysterious neighbor, Violet.
Several times, she perceives a strong attraction from her looks and some intimate behavior, but it is only when she goes to her apartment for a small work that the passion blossoms between them.
Right at the best of times, unfortunately, her partner arrives: Caesar, a small-time mob henchman who makes it clear how the whole building is practically owned by his gang.
Violet is fed up with living amid all that violence, so when her friend Shelly, a silly accountant, relieves the boss’s finances of a couple of million dollars, she proposes to Corky to help her steal it and then run far away together.
But when Johnnie, son of the boss of the whole gang, Gino Marzzone, puts too much pressure on Caesar, he makes a grave mistake that could potentially ruin their plans.
Thus, each protagonist in this tragedy must improvise and fight relentlessly to save their lives and perhaps even become wealthy and settle down once and for all.
Living an ideal is more difficult than just talking on social networks
If there is something I am largely fed up with these days, I do not know if it is the same for you; it is the stupid and eternal struggle between the woke and the anti-woke on social networks.
The former waste no time stupidly criticizing any form of mass media that does not conform to what they believe to be higher moral standards, from movies to literature to video games or even simple Twitter posts.
While the latter, just as stupidly, miss no opportunity to criticize in any media the presence of any gay or trans or differently-sexed character or theme, as if they were put in just to please the woke.
Simply, for me, the truth is this: either you know how to write and direct a film, or you don’t, and if not, then it is absolutely pointless putting a homosexual or a lesbian in the story to please one part of the audience.
For example, there are great directors (indeed masters) like Pedro Almodóvar who have talked about these matters for over 40 years, since he has directed movies from when I was born.
Like Lana and Lilly Wachowski, though, you can see that these are topics they really care about, and they don’t just put them in for a trend to accommodate a specific political agenda.
Wachowski’s sisters (not coincidentally, first brothers) have always been on the side of the outsiders against the system, whether it was the rebels of the Matrix saga, V for Vendetta, or even the many protagonists of the fantastic series Sense8 they made for Netflix.
This film debut of theirs is no different; indeed, it already contains all those factors we will see in their phenomenal careers in the following years.
A sexy and dangerous story
However, let us remember that besides the message behind a movie, you also need consistency, and Bound is one of the thrillers that most surprised audiences in 1996.
The dark and pessimistic atmosphere of the story fits perfectly with the exquisite photographic style that would mark the Wachowskis’ career, along with the elegant and technically virtuosic camera motions we can observe from the first sequence.
In a sequence that takes place inside a closet, we hear voices echoing the main lines from the story in the background, lowering the frame to Gina Gershon tied up on the floor.
With her, we relive in flashback everything that has happened up to that moment, starting, of course, with the elevator encounter where she meets Jennifer Tilly, who provokes her with a few unforgettable sensual looks.
It is not only the sex and seduction scenes where the performances of these two actresses are great, but also how they always seem strong and weak at the same time, with two characters who are cunning but not as bright as they think they are.
As I repeat repeatedly, every protagonist needs an equally worthy antagonist, and they find a perfect enemy in the uncanny smile of Joe Pantoliano, later another infamous traitor in the first Matrix.
Pantoliano also plays a character who thinks he is more intelligent and stronger than he really is, keeping the balance of this game always at a level where we never know what will happen.
Let’s also not underestimate, of course, the supporting cast with Christopher Meloni playing the arrogant Johnny, practically Pantoliano’s nemesis, along with the brief but intense role of the great Richard C. Sarafian, a movie legend who, besides being an actor, was also a director for the unforgettable cult road movie Vanishing Point.