Based on a domestic bestseller by the Dutch gay novelist Gerard Reve, this slick 1983 production by Paul Verhoeven (Basic Instinct, Spetters) spins its trick plot with enough speed and flash to keep audiences highly entertained. But beneath the supernatural inflections of this story—about a gay poet (Jeroen Krabbe) lured into a relationship with a witchlike hairstylist (then-Verhoeven regular Renee Soutendijk) by his hopes of seducing her hunky boyfriend—lie conceptions of women as castrating harpies and of gays as predatory beasts that are insulting to all the sexualities involved. It isn’t often that I let reactionary attitudes spoil my enjoyment of essentially empty entertainments; if they did so here, it’s probably because of the obnoxious assurance with which Verhoeven puts them across. 104 min. In Dutch with subtitles.