Bound

Bound is a 1996 American neo-noir crime thriller film written and directed by The Wachowskis in their feature film directorial debut. Violet (Jennifer Tilly), who longs to escape her relationship with her mafioso boyfriend Caesar (Joe Pantoliano), enters into a clandestine affair with alluring ex-con Corky (Gina Gershon), and the two women hatch a scheme to steal $2 million of mafia money.

Bound was the first film directed by the Wachowskis, and they took inspiration from Billy Wilder to tell a noir story filled with sex and violence. Financed by Dino De Laurentiis, the film was made on a tight budget with the help of frugal crew members including cinematographer Bill Pope. The directors initially struggled to cast the lesbian characters of Violet and Corky before securing Tilly and Gershon. To choreograph the sex scenes, the directors employed “sex educator” Susie Bright, who also made a cameo appearance in the film.

Bound received positive reviews from film critics who praised the humor and style of the directors as well as the realistic portrayal of a lesbian relationship in a mainstream film. Detractors of the film criticized the excessive violence and superficiality of the plot. The film won several festival awards.

Bound, 1996 theatrical release poster