is a 1993 Americanerotic thrillerfilm based on theabout the mysterious occurrences in a privately ownedNew Yorkhigh-risesliver building.Phillip Noycedirected the film, from a screenplay byJoe Eszterhas.Because of a major battle with theMPAA(which originally gave the film an NC-17 rating), the filmmakers were forced to make extensive reshoots before release. These reshoots actually necessitated changing the killers identity. The film starsSharon StoneWilliam Baldwin, andTom Berenger. When he signed on to direct the film, Phillip Noyce remarked I liked the script a lot. Or at least, I liked the idea of jumping on the Joe Eszterhas bandwagon.
Carly Norris (Sharon Stone), abook editorand divorcee in her mid 30s, moves into the exclusive New York Citysliver building113. She meets other tenants including Zeke (William Baldwin), avideo gamedesigner, Jack (Tom Berenger), anovelist, Vida (Polly Walker) afashion modelwhomoonlightsas acall girland Gus (Keene Curtis), a professor ofvideographyatNew York University. They tell Carly that she bears a striking resemblance to the previous tenant of her apartment, Naomi Singer, who fell to her death from her balcony.
After running into Zeke numerous times Carly invites him to herhousewarming party. Soon after they begin a sexual relationship. Meanwhile Jack startsstalkingCarly and warning her about Zeke who he says is sick. As Jacks behaviour becomes more erratic, Gus and Vida die under suspicious circumstances. Zeke reveals to Carly that he is the owner of 113, which he bought with the inheritance of his wealthy father. As owner of 113, Zeke installed a comprehensivevideo surveillancesystem throughout the building,allowing him to spyon all of the tenants of 113 from his own secret surveillance room. Through deduction and, eventually, one of Zekes secret recordings Carly learns that Jack killed Naomi in acrime passionnel. Jack was jealous of Zeke, who had sexual relations with Naomi and a number of other tenants in 113. Finally Jack attacks Carly in her own apartment and she shoots him dead.
Angry at Zeke for withholding evidence in Naomis murder, and jealous of his liaisons with the other tenants, Carly destroys Zekes surveillance room and tells him to get a life before leaving.
In the film, the tall and narrow sliver building is located at 113East 38th StreetinManhattan, placing it at 38th Street andPark Avenue. The actual building used in the film is known as Morgan Court, located at 211Madison AvenueNew York, one block west and two blocks south of the fictional address. The building has since become a condominium development. It was built in 1985 and has 32 floors. While the movie made use of the buildings courtyard, the lobby was a Los Angeles film set.
In the films original ending Zeke, instead of Jack, turns out to be theantagonist. He and Carly fly over a Hawaiian volcano when Zeke suddenly confesses his crimes. He then veers the aircraft into the volcano as the end credits roll and leaves the audience to decide whether they survive.6The shooting of the final scene resulted in the crashing of the helicopter. After an investigation the pilots certificate was temporarily suspended. The footage shot during the flight was destroyed.7
Preview audiencesdisliked the idea of Carly turning immoral: in the helicopter scene she tells Zeke that the evidence against him is somewhere safe, implying she is willing to cover up his crimes.
The film premiered on May 19, 1993, atMann National TheatreinWestwood, Los Angeles.1It was released two days later, on May 21, and received negative reviews from critics. OnRotten Tomatoesit has an approval rating of 11% based on 27 reviews, with aweighted averageof 3.61/10.8The main criticisms were that the film provided little in the way of compellingthrillerelements, that it diluted some of the plotlines of the novel, and that the actors were not on form. Many also singled out the editing and ending, calling the latter hasty and unconvincing.910
According to aShowtimespecial about the film prior to the late-night premiere showing of the original NC-17 version, the debate over the NC-17 versus R-rating was linked solely to the display of male frontal nudity. However, whenParamountreleased the unrated version to video there was no male frontal nudity included, though the sex scenes were considerably more graphic.
The film debuted at No. 1 at the box office making $12.1 million in 2,093 theatres.11By the second week the box office taking dropped to No. 6.12Slivereventually grossed $36.3 million domestically and $80 million outside the United States to a total of $116.3 million worldwide.2
When originally released on VHS, the film was released in both an R-rated and an unrated version (the original NC-17 version). In March 2006, to coincide with the theatrical release ofBasic Instinct 2, which starred Stone,Sliverwas released on DVD. Only the unrated cut was made commercially available, but the R-rated cut was distributed for rental. There are no special features and although the film was presented theatrically in the 2.35aspect ratio, the DVD features a matted, 2.10aspect ratiotransfer. The picture quality of the disc has been criticized by reviewers for what was felt to be an unusually high amount of dirt and scratches for a film that was 12 years old at the time of the DVDs release.13In 2013, the film was released on Blu-ray Disc, using the same matted 2.10 aspect ratio version of the R-rated theatrical cut.
Dowd, Maureen (1993-05-30).FILM; Bucks and Blondes: Joe Eszterhas Lives The Big DreamThe New York Times
Dretzka, Gary (1997-10-26).Beyond `Sliver: `Lies Screenwriter Joe Eszterhas Takes On The Critics Of His Sexy ScriptsChicago Tribune
The Nerve Interview: Joe EszterhasNerve.com. 2006-09-15
Hicks, Chris (May 30, 1993).WITHOUT `SLIVER OF A CLUE, MYSTERY ENDS POORLY.
Dowd, Maureen(May 30, 1993).FILM; Bucks and Blondes: Joe Eszterhas Lives The Big Dream.
Rainer, Peter (1993-05-22).MOVIE REVIEW: Erotic Thriller Sliver Leaves a Lot to Be Desired: This wrongheaded version of Ira Levins pulp novel may be about voyeurism, but it doesnt provide much to watchLos Angeles Times
Fox, David J. (1993-05-24).Stone Gets a Sliver of Box Office but Not a Runaway Movies: Hot Shots! also opens strongly but the blockbuster hopes are now on Memorial Day weekendLos Angeles Times
Fox, David J. (1993-06-01).Slys Back in Peak Form at Box Office: Movies: Cliffhanger grabs the largest opening for a non-sequel on any Memorial Day weekend. Made in America opens in second place.
Reuben, Michael (September 5, 2013).Sliver Blu-ray Review.
. The Official RAZZIEŽ Forum. Archived fromthe originalon 17 February 2010
Purtell, Tim (1993-06-04).All About the WatchtowerEntertainment Weekly
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