Paul Verhoeven

Lowest Rated: 20% Hollow Man 2 (2006)
Birthday: Jul 18, 1938
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Born in Amsterdam in 1938, some of director Paul Verhoeven's earliest memories are of Nazi and Allied planes falling from the sky into nearby fields. Verhoeven as a child let his curiosity lead him to visit the dead pilots, potentially molding his psyche to allow for the possibility that war holds more ambiguity than right versus wrong. Verhoeven's work is considered by many violent and misogynistic, but in looking at his films, there is a clear sense not of hatred, but of yearning for a missing piece -- of love, passion, memory, or fulfillment -- that touches all his creations. His films may not have the warm-fuzzy images that make them easy to digest. He freely admits his films are violent, not for the sake of violence, but, he says, because "...it is my sincere opinion film only reflects the violence of society." Verhoeven is what film buffs want most in a filmmaker, someone who is complicated, an enigma who brings his complexities to the screen. Verhoeven earned his Ph.D. in mathematics and physics from the prestigious University of Leiden and soon joined the Royal Dutch Navy, making documentaries and short films for the military. In 1969, Verhoeven moved into fictional filmmaking with a popular Dutch TV series (Floris), in which he first cast an unknown Rutger Hauer, before making his first theatrical feature, Business Is Business (1971). Turkish Delight (1973), which paired him with cinematographer and frequent collaborator Jan de Bont, was his first international success; in 1999, it garnered the prestigious Netherlands Golden Calf as the Best Dutch Film of the Century. It shows Verhoeven's first real leanings toward a reoccurring theme of erotic obsession. He followed that with Cathy Tippel (1975), a story of a young girl forced into prostitution because of her family's poverty. In 1979 he made Soldier of Orange, a grim coming-of-age story set during World War II, which became a staple of the more esoteric movie houses when it was released in the U.S. and later enjoyed a resurgence amongst film aficionados on VHS and DVD. With his now-favorite actor Rutger Hauer, Verhoeven furthered his reputation with erotic, violence-laden adolescent fantasy Spetters (1980), about three motorcycle racers obsessed over a young woman who sells hot dogs in a concession where they race. Verhoeven spiced his suspense levels with the psycho-sexual thriller The Fourth Man (1983) about a bisexual writer, overwhelmed by his attraction to a beautiful hairdresser. The director's first English-language film was Flesh + Blood (1985), a 16th century adventure film re-titled The Sword and the Rose in re-release; it involves kidnapping and revenge, with a little plague thrown in for fun. Verhoeven moved to international attention with Robocop (1986), the story of a cop brought back to life by technology and haunted by memories of his past. Sharon Stone, a supporting actress in his 1990 release Total Recall, starred in Verhoeven's most notorious film, Basic Instinct (1992). Utilizing much of the premise of his earlier The Fourth Man, Verhoeven managed to combine many of his past sub themes -- political duplicity, urban decay, sexual ambiguity, appalling violence, and abnormality lurking within normality, to his highest commercial and critical acclaim. Verhoeven's 1995 film Showgirls, about Vegas showgirls trying to overcome difficult life choices, was equally controversial and almost universally panned by critics and the public. In 1997, he returned to the sci-fi action/adventure mode with Starship Troopers. Though a critical flop, Troopers was lauded for its groundbreaking special effects, showcasing amazing gigantic bugs and their battle scenes with human soldiers sent to obliterate them. Verhoeven delved further into the sci-fi jumbo-effects genre with his next film, Hollow Man. Kevin Bacon starred in the remake of the H.G. Wells classic of moral deterioration that occurs after experimenting with human invisibility. He would continue to direct in

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

CREDIT
91% Elle Director $2.4M 2016
40% Tricked (Steekspel) Screenwriter Director 2016
No Score Yet Die Schuld Des Dr. Homma Director 2014
No Score Yet Salonwagen E 417 Director 2013
No Score Yet Herr Sanders lebt gefährlich Actor 2013
No Score Yet Die Nacht in Venedig (The Night in Venice) Director 2012
No Score Yet Der Tag Nach Der Scheidung Director 2011
No Score Yet Das kalte Herz (Heart of Stone) Director 2010
75% Black Book Director Screenwriter $4.4M 2007
20% Hollow Man 2 Executive Producer 2006
No Score Yet The Cutting Edge: The Magic of Movie Editing Actor 2006
100% Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession Actor 2004
28% Hollow Man Director $72.1M 2000
62% Starship Troopers Director 1997
22% Showgirls Director 1995
53% Basic Instinct Director 1992
82% Total Recall Director $119.1M 1990
89% RoboCop Director 1987
81% Flesh & Blood (Flesh+Blood) (The Rose and the Sword) Screenwriter Director 1985
100% De Vierde Man (The Fourth Man) (The 4th Man) Director 1983
78% Spetters Director 1980
91% Soldaat van Oranje (Soldier of Orange) (Survival Run) Screenwriter 1977
No Score Yet Katie Tippel Director 1976
80% Turks Fruit (Turkish Delight) (The Sensualist) (Wild Intent) Director 1973
No Score Yet Wat zien ik (Business Is Business) (Any Special Way) (Diary of a Hooker) Director 1971
No Score Yet Philharmoniker (Philharmonic) Screenwriter Director 1944
No Score Yet Gold In New Frisco Director 1939

TV

CREDIT
No Score Yet The Hitchhiker
1983-1991
Director
  • 1986

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