CANNES:- A twisted rape thriller by “Basic Instinct” director Paul Verhoeven drew rave reviews Saturday in Cannes as one of two films about a woman trying to prise back control from her attacker. With its radical take on the aftermath of a brutal sex crime, the Dutch director’s latest movie “Elle” had everything to set critics on edge before the screening. But the story of a powerful woman played by French actress Isabelle Huppert, who is assaulted and embarks on a dangerous game with her attacker, was a surprise hit for its portrayal of a woman taking matters into her own hands.

Verhoeven told AFP his film was not a traditional tale of revenge, but a woman who “takes another route” and draws her rapist back into her life.