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Basic Instinct 2 2006

Novelist Catherine Tramell is once again in trouble with the law, and Scotland Yard appoints psychiatrist Dr. Michael Glass to evaluate her. Though, like Detective Nick Curran before him, Glass is entranced by Tramell and lured into a seductive game...

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This movie tries to go so deep into the mind of Catherine (Stone) and tries to do a Silence of the Lambs-like psychiatric assessment that it leaves you bored and tired. If you just ache to see a beaver on screen, you're better to stick with Narnia.


It's a fun movie. It made me laugh out loud at times (!), much more than the unfunny 40-Year Old Steve Carell, for instance.
I have looked into the face of evil. She is a woman, and her name is Catherine Trammell (pronounced Tra-MELL). I'll be quoting a lot from other critics here, because I found reading their reviews, they said what I thought better than I could.

First, though, before we go any further, please know that whatever you think of Sharon Stone, or this movie, this is a first rate murder mystery. It is set in London and all the players except Sharon Stone are English .. and, as I watched, I couldn't help thinking this would have been a terrific episode of Mystery! on PBS.

The movie like the psychotic Catherine Tra-MELL, draws you in. At first, you think it's obvious what's going on; then, you're not so sure; then you're sure, and angry at all these stupid people for falling for Catherine's schemes; then, at the end, you're not sure again .. On that level, this movie works.

But, this movie is not at its most .. well, basic .. a mystery. It is a character study of Tra-MELL, and the actress who plays her, and as such, it does not succeed quite as well.

Roger Ebert gives us the first clue to unlocking the mystery of Trammell and Stone: "The Catherine Tramell role cannot be played well, but Sharon Stone can play it badly better than any other actress alive .. "

Chris Hewitt delivers another: "Stone, who never raises her voice above a bedroom purr, plays Catherine like she doesn't give a "research" if anyone thinks she's ridiculous. She knows "Basic Instinct 2" is a comedy, and she is the only one in on the joke."

This is critical. You buy this, you buy the movie. If you don't, then BI 2 becomes a farce, not a comedy or a murder mystery. Trammell is in a world of her own, and Stone creates that world first in Trammell's own head, then in the shrink's who sees her for what she is and is taken in anyway, then .. in ours.

Owen Glieberman tells us how Catherine weaves her spell: "What counted wasn't the words but the subtext Stone brought to them, her persistent toying glimmer of You know you want to f--- me. Everything else was just talk."

This movie is all about subtext. The sexual tension builds .. and builds, and while there is release for some of the characters, usually in death, there is none for us. "It's a treat, " Glieberman says, "to see Stone rev her evil vixen engine again .. " Indeed.

Stone is still a strikingly beautiful woman (and so is Charlotte Rampling who costars, but I digress), and if she were not, the audience wouldn't buy into her character, nor would we believe what we were seeing when the psychiatrist who is treating her, falls under her spell.

The mechanism of seduction was absolutely perfect, down to the smallest detail. Trammell meticulously schemes to seduce her therapist, every line she speaks in session a ploy to arouse his libido .. And, as soon as he shows an interest, she secures the hook in his mouth .. and disappears. "I'm canceling therapy," she says at one point, and briefly drops out of his life. He's hooked.

What is most interesting here is we are not. The psychiatrist who is her foil, her mark, her lover, her boy-toy, and at some moments her enemy .. begins to unravel before our eyes, and it is here where this movie lost me. His helplessness did not ring true.

So, we've come to the end of our Catherine Trammell character study, and it is time to summarize. Is she a serial killer or is she not? The movie does not say, so we are left to decide for ourselves.

But, Roger Ebert and Director Michael Caton-Jones provide the most important insight into her character, when Ebert says of the director: " alternates smoldering closeups with towering dominatrix poses"

Catherine Trammell stands revealed at last: a garden variety dominatrix, whose entire life consists of playing head games with everyone she meets. And, she is very good. Her psychiatrist early on says that she has an "omnipotence" fixation, and we don't understand that at first. By the end of this movie, we know exactly what it means: she is, indeed, the dominatrix, working every circumstance, every emotion, every lapse in judgment into an intricate tapestry of evil in service to her own ends.

I liked Basic Instinct 2. Call it a guilty pleasure.
Having only ever seen basic instinct at a young age and not really understanding it, I felt I had to re-watch it before going to see this sequel. I watched the first again simply because prior viewings drew me to the 'sex' element and particularly the pussy flash moment. On re-watching the first film, I instantly understood the film and the characters but the story was still questionable? For example who was the actual killer?

Basic instinct 2, I assumed, would provide closure but yet it didn't. I say this with caution.

The film in itself is very confusing. The story is a development of basic instinct yet not as good. With basic instinct it was quite simply a thriller with a suggestible ending. Basic instinct 2 is much more of a psychological thriller with emphasis on the word psychological. There is too much in the way of what should be her fucking with him. This dampens the story and creates a smoke screen not only for Dr. Michael Glass (him), but for the viewer alike.

The film opens with a sex scene and a subsequent death much like the first film. Catherine is then arrested for the death of the guy in the opening scene. To be granted bail, she has to have a psychological analysis by one Dr. Michael Glass. During this analysis, Catherine is deemed as having a "risk addiction".

The film is then lifted as we divulge into the life of Michael Glass and a copper named Welshpool. The story has it that during a case they were both involved in, there were some lose ends and a sorry excuse of a cover up (without giving too much away).

As relevant as this was to the movie, I felt it was some what shit. Pointless even. The movie didn't need this kind of confusion. Aside from what I thought of this part of the story, I did my best to keep up with it. It turned out to be the fuel for one killing, a magazine reporter.

Catherine is then bailed and all charges for the death of the guy in the opening scene are dropped. Catherine turns up at Michaels office requesting that she becomes a private psychiatric patient of his, soon enough, he agrees and accept her as a patient.

The rest of the film harbors death and questions. Each death is surrounded with suspicion and could be summed up single wordily.

Lust, Jealousy, Anger, Hatred.

There is more to it than that, but I had best not spoil it for you.

Things happen and the consequence is that the Catherine is transferred to a different doctor, Milena.

The film ended with Dr. Glass rushing to save the final victim, Milena. Dr. Glass came to the conclusion that Milena was next, after reading a draft of a new book Catherine was writing which was handed to him by Catherine. The ending was left out only for him to think it himself.

He rushed to Milena's home and it was here where the story started to unfold. Catherine had become a patient of Milena's and was at her house. She had no intention of killing or even harming Milena. Yet it is here at Milena's home that we get answers or at least potential answers. And it is also here where Dr. Glass kills Welshpool. Milena is hurt but only by Michael. Not Catherine.

Had Catherine driven him to do it though?

The final scene is of Dr. Glass in a psychiatric institution where he is submitted having killed Welshpool. Catherine visits him with a completed copy of her new book. The ending is the one he created for her.

Inside the book is a note that provides closure.

"I couldn't have done this without you".

The note itself is controversial as it can be seen from many angles. Does it suggest that she couldn't have killed without him being the way he was nor does it suggest that she couldn't have finished the book had he not been the way he was?

I guess you have to pick an answer and stick with it as this is as much closure as you're going to get. There is no BASIC INSTINCT 3.



Other parts of the film worthy of a comment are her chain smoking habit. Early in the film she lights up and is told to out it. You get a pause and expect a line such like that of the first film "what are you going to do? Charge me with smoking" but you don't, she abides by the rules and does not smoke.
And other is while having sex with the doctor, she reaches under the bed and the audience is left in suspense as the camera flicks back and forth from the hand traveling and the doc's pleasured facial expressions. The same happened in 1 and the object she reached for was an ice pick, here it was a belt which she choked the doc with to heighten the pleasure. She did not kill him.

This is a good film, nothing special but definitely worth a watch. I guess you have to be in the right frame of mind though or else if you don't understand it in its early stages you will get bored.
Basic Instinct 2 picks up where the other one left off, then hits it outta the park! This movie truly scared the pants off me. Stone's depiction of a sexual predator effectively ended any mystery as to why she's currently single! NO one can play a part that convincingly unless they find a LOT of truth of the character from within. As good as Stone was in Casino, I think this will be her career-defining performance, even though it's a virtual certainty the Academy will shun any Oscar aspirations.

But the critics lose all credibility with their near universal panning of this movie. It is not only a stylish noir thriller, but a tour de force for all the actors as well. It's almost as if they resent Stone for even daring to attempt to carry a movie as a 48-yr-old sex bomb. I hope Stone makes at least ANOTHER $14 million from the BO, and laughs all the way to the bank.

BTW, the nudity in this flick is totally lost in the intricacies of the plot. That is not to say that it is gratuitous by any means. Just the opposite in fact. It is done so naturally, that you almost don't notice it (that might be an exaggeration, because the only way to not notice Sharon Stone nude is if you have no pulse...thus is it obvious that many of the most vocal critics of Stone are, in fact, dead.). Stone OWNS this part, and by extension, ME.

It truly is a pity so many of the critics are so intimidated by Stone's sexuality, to the point that they remain blind to her talent. She owns this part as surely as Stallone owns Rambo. And, like Rambo, if she wants to make multiple installments of this character, I'll still be drooling for her in BI 14, even if she's 74 yrs. old when she makes it. I can't quit you Sharon. I don't know how much of Catherine is in you, and vice versa, but it would be a wonderful adventure to find out!
What's the statute of limitations on sequels? 5 years? 10? Unfortunately, thanks to "Star Wars" I guess all bets are off! Sharon Stone once again stars as demented horn-dog Catherine Tramell, the serial killing chain-smoker who's now living in London, killing off (or not killing off) the friends of her lover/psychiatrist and talking like she has a fetish-obsessed Raymond Chandler feeding her dialogue through a hidden earpiece. It's a real shame to watch all these grade-A Brits trying to elevate this over-baked, over-sexed, over-written shock schlock above the level of your average "Red Shoe Diaries" sequel. PLUS they ripped off the theme music from "Blood Simple" and in my book that's punishable by death! Will we see a "Basic Instinct 3" come 2027? Pray for global warming!
To read more of this review (including its comic companion piece) check out www.flickskinny.com
As i write this im coming off a huge stint of a busy work day. Not important you might say? but you'd be wrong. it is important as if id written this review straight after the movie as planned i might have a half decent memory of it and be able to come up with something intelligent to say. truth is now i cant. Truth is im probably not the best person to comment on this film at all. im not an all out action meat-head but even watching Basic Instinct 2 made the gears in my head grind a bit too much, let alone having to summise what i thought of it. So ill try my best!!
First off i was probably slightly too young to watch the first movie when it was first out. but none the less having seen it at later stages of my life i can still say its worth watching. It doesnt need a sequel, if im honest there are few films that do, but Basic Instinct works well on its own. It leaves you shortly after a big twist with more questions in mind. you come away never really knowing what the truth is. Im cool with that its original, clever and thought provoking. So why the need for a sequel?
Well if your a straight up fan of the original and you came looking for answers, then look away. it doesnt deliver. I think if you hadnt seen the original youll get alot more from this film, as there are higher expectations of something great coming from something that was great a few years back. Sadly this film has taken a character we loved (or loved to hate) and delved deeper into what makes them tick. Which makes for a very confusing movie. Its hard being objective and not straight out blasting it for being way below par of the original. You will always compare two parts of a story, however different they may be. so to get it off my chest the first film had sex appeal, tension and grit. the sequel has long winded history, uninteresting characters, boring physco-babble speeches and a story interwound all over the place so tightly it could be the roof of a tudor manor house. to say its not as edge of your seat as other thrillers is a given from the start. Actually i remember giving up trying to follow all the back story and resigned with the knowledge that it was ment to put you in the role of the leading man and confuse the piss outta you. this film does nothing to enhance the original and makes it perfectly clear that the motive for making it in the first place was to cash in on something that people had enjoyed previously. To summise (as best i can) I came away from the film thinking how long and drawn out it all seemed, and how un-sexy all the talk made the rest of it for me. trying to remember it now just feels like a blur along the lines of '...uh murder... talking... physco-babble..... more murder... more talking ....end' i wish i could fairly evaluate this film, but fact is its a sequel and it didnt need to be made. More realistic fact is it would have worked a hell of alot better if itd been its own movie. Theres not alot else here that will draw positive attention from movie goers who simply saw the film due to the success of its predecessor. the dialogue without Stone on screen is boring and the dialogue with her on screen is cheesy at best. theres isnt really any action, and the sex scenes dont exactly sizzle. And it doesnt really end in an all to unpredictable way. Id suggest go and watch this film if you enjoyed the original or its reputation. but dont expect to come away having seen a hugley entertaining feature. If your tempted by a positive review... move on youll get alot more for your money from other things on the market.
Wata crap and a waist of time.
Life is simple! So live it normally.

...

Hostel

Has its head way above water compared to the SAW franchise, which is utter crap.

V For Vendetta

The only people that love this movie have very ignoarant views about the the film. Chech www.moviemarshal.com to read my review in full.

Inside Man

Exxxxxcelent! Denzel not just in another cop movie. Jodie not just playing a strong minded woman. Ok I lied, but its a great film, and about time Spike Lee found the mainstream.

Basic Instinct 2

Probably not as bad the critics are making it out to be, but it has its moments but is still a very flat film. Check www.worldofkj.com for more.

Firewall

Harrison Ford should really die.
March 31, 2006

"Basic Instinct 2" was a target even before the cameras started rolling. Funny how a sequel to a movie that so many people liked could be deemed so appalling even before anyone got a chance to see it. Perhaps it was because Sharon Stone hasn't carried a movie on her own since the first "Basic Instinct" was released. That movie shot her up to super-stardom because of a famous interrogation scene, but has she really proved herself a full-fledged actress or boxoffice star? "Casino," remember, had Martin Scorcese calling the shots.

Unfortunately, Ms. Stone still can't carry a movie. And while the shot of her spreading her legs in a room full of sweating detectives may have been the most memorable moment in the original film, it's not what kept viewers in their seats. There was a hook in the movie and its name was Michael Douglas. He made an attractive and sympathetic hero, but he was also enigmatic and interesting, which explains how "Basic Instinct 2" goes wrong.

Catherine Tramell (Stone) is once again under investigation for a death she may have caused. At the beginning of the movie, she races around the streets of London, where there are apparently no other drivers on the road. Her passenger is a professional soccer player, whom she gets to indulge her in a little road sex before crashing off a bridge into the Thames. She manages to escape from the sinking vehicle, but her beau is left for dead. Did Catherine subconciously kill him?

According to Dr. Michael Glass (David Morrissey), Catherine suffers from Risk Addiction - a condition that causes her to see herself as either omnipotent or nonexistent if she doesn't treat herself to a little danger. "Risk Addiction," if you don't already know, was the original sub-heading for this movie; it was a wise choice by MGM to cut it. Catherine goes to Dr. Glass for treatment. His instincts tell him to send her to his colleague, Milena Gardosh (Charlotte Rampling), but he thinks Catherine can somehow redeem him from a previous patient's own murder spree that he feels he could have prevented.

Yearning to throw the book at Catherine is Detective Washburn (David Thewlis), one of those weasel movie cops with a smug-looking mustache. He keeps a close eye on Glass and Catherine, making sure the good doctor and the long-legged vixen don't get too close.

All of this has the making of a juicy piece of guilty pleasure, just like the trashy murder mysteries Catherine writes. But the problem is we never end up caring, neither sympathetically nor contemptibly, about Dr. Glass, who's made the focal point of the drama and conflict. He's bland, unheroic and doesn't take the lead like he should. Part of the problem may rest with the writing, which, in all fairness, sounds like it was written for a real adult movie and not just the soft-core version. But Morrissey seems miscast. He just can't find any leverage to makes us care about any of the movie's outcomes, be it the murders (and there are a few), the mystery or the twist. The movie is not so bad as it is dull.

Another disappointment are the sex scenes. Anyone paying to see this movie is expecting some salacious love scenes, but they're more alluded to than shown. Sharon Stone has been on numerous talk-shows trying to sell this movie on its erotic appeal. But for what? It's not steamy or sensuous and we get the impression that not even the characters taking part are having any fun.

There was potential here for something more seductive and titillating. Perhaps with a tighter cut, a jumpier soundtrack and riskier sex scenes, "Basic Instinct 2" could have been fun in a naughty sort of way. It's not gargantuanly bad like some have said. Far from it. But when it comes to entertainment, the filmmakers seemed to have forgotten their basic instincts.