Reviewed by

Bud Carlson

The original Basic Instinct movie was not a fantastic movie, but it was an enjoyable one. It was fun to look at, had an engaging storyline, and was a commercial success. Sounds like a good candidate for a sequel, right? So now it’s 15 years later, fifteen years, and this frightful mess is the best they were able to cobble together?  I’m almost speechless. (But not quite.) 


Basic Instinct 2 returns Sharon Stone as Catherine Tramell, a sex-mad, violence-crazed author of pop fiction novels. She has relocated to London in this one, where she is under investigation for the death of a soccer player (as we see in the first few minutes of the film, the sportsman was ‘getting her off’ in a speeding car that ultimately ended up in the bottom of a river). The murder investigation includes having a psychiatrist (Dr Andrew Glass, played very poorly by David Morrissey) examine her for her mental fitness. Tramell is exonerated of any charges, but naturally, because she sees him as an easy target for her manipulative and deadly charms, she returns to see Dr Glass, for treatment of her ‘Risk Addiction’ (which was originally the second title for this movie). Mix in a police officer of questionable ethics, Glass’s dissatisfied ex-wife (and her new lover), and a nutty old shrink who counsels Dr Glass, and you have the ingredients of this film. 

The above paragraph is probably the most boring summary that will be written in reviews of this film, and yet this paragraph is much more exciting than the movie itself. It seems that, over the 15 years that have passed since the first film was made, Ms Stone has forgotten how to play the manipulative Tramell, as she simply relies on entendre-laced quips and overacting to get her through the sequel.  But in spite of it, she

was far better than any others in the movie: As Trammel’s new bunk-buddy, British actor David Morrissey is so unbelievably bad and so relentlessly bland, with his face holding the exact same exhausted _expression throughout the entire show, as though he had taken too many muscle-relaxants. And the storyline is a total mess, and not nearly as exciting as watching the grass grow. And the intention of the movie’s final scene is to provide a conclusion to the movie (which was painfully long, to make matters worse) without resolving any of the “who-dun-it mysteries”, but I have seen better cliff-hangers on Friday episodes of “General Hospital”. 

I really don’t understand why this movie was made. But since it was made, they should at least have the decency to send it straight-to-video where not as many people will get duped by it!  Or even better, just send it straight to Showtime, where they can air it at midnight, instead of some of that other soft-core near-porn that Chris watches.


Armstead’s Second: ‘ …Suffering, so you don’t have to’ Is really only a splash page heading for the most part.  How bad can you suffer when you get go free movies no matter bad they may be?  People, we have suffered on this one.  Horrible acting (David Thewlis excepted) bad direction, bad story, The dumbest character in the HISTORY of motion fiction, hell, even the musical score was bad.  It even failed as a Skinemax late night soft-core feature because there wasn’t a heckuva lot of nudity and sex.  Sharon Stone look great…  for a 48-year-old woman.  Apparently the abs aren’t quite the six-pack they used to be because they are always conveniently blocked, say by a chair, a person, a skyscraper…  Fifteen years ago, I looked pretty good with my shirt off too.  Today I don’t so look so good, and I’m cool with that.  Oh Sharon, first Catwoman, and now this.  There is no conscionable reason why this thing was released to theaters and not straight to video where it rightly belongs.



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