Director: Michael Caton-Jones
Starring: Sharon Stone, David Morrissey, Charlotte
Rampling, David Thewlis, Hugh Dancy
RunTime: 1 hr 54 mins
Released By: GV and Encore Films
Opening Day: 13 July 2006
In the sexy and sleek psychological thriller Basic Instinct
2, after re-locating from San Francisco to London, best-selling
crime novelist Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone) once again
finds herself on the wrong side of the law.
Michael Glass (David Morrissey), a respected London criminal
psychiatrist, is brought in by Scotland Yard detective Roy
Washburn to perform a psychiatric profile and evaluation of
Tramell following the mysterious death of a top sports star.
Physically drawn to Tramell and mentally intrigued by her,
Glass, against the advice of his mentor, Dr. Milena Gardosh,
is quickly sucked into her web of lies and seduction. The
professional boundaries between Glass and Tramell are obliterated
when she uncovers his basic instincts. A deadly battle of
wits ensues, climaxing as Glass faces a choice that will change
both their lives forever.
There are certain images that will go down history as “great
movie moments”. Take for example, Sharon Stone crossing
her legs while being interrogated in Paul Verhoeven’s
erotic thriller Basic Instinct (1992). And those ice picks
- they still send shivers down our spines.
years later, someone came up with the idea to make a sequel
to this guilty pleasure of a movie. But alas, not only is
there no iconic “movie moment”, the resultant
that is Basic Instinct 2 could not have been more disastrous,
as far as movie sequels go.
reprises her role as novelist Catherine Tramell, who does
not learn her lesson, and gets into trouble again with the
law. Her appointed psychiatrist Dr. Michael Glass (David Morrissey
trying his best to look sullen and intense) has to evaluate
her, and unsurprisingly, he gets entranced by this dangerous
woman and lured into a seductive game of lies and deceit.
its predecessor isn’t exactly a critically-acclaimed
movie classic, at least it was well-known for its no-bars-held
style. It also made a star out of Stone. Unfortunately, this
sequel tries too hard to be intellectual and seductive at
the same time.
plot of the movie unfolds like a novel itself, and along the
way, no thanks to tiresome scripting, the pace becomes wearisome.
One third into the movie and you can already predict what
is going to happen next; and when the story becomes ridiculous,
you will find yourself laughing at the unintentionally funny
scenes. The supposedly titillating lines spouted by the characters
do not help to build the suspense either. Instead, they fall
through rather badly.
be fair, the cast does deserve some credit. At the age of
48, Stone is ravishing to watch. Her sensual self is the highlight
of this 114-minute movie. In fact, the only thing you’d
be watching out for are the scenes she appears in. Some may
find her whispery and lusty voice annoying after a while,
but we are perfectly fine with that.
role is rather difficult to pull off, considering he has to
live up to a certain Michael Douglas. So his portrayal of
the struggling raging psychiatrist gets our vote for being
the most sympathetic movie character we have seen in a while.
Then there are the always reliable Charlotte Rampling and
David Thewlis to round up the supporting cast of a mentor
and a police detective respectively.
Having given kudos to the supporting cast, we would think
that the capable UK actors have not been properly utilized
in this movie. And we also pity Stone, if she had thought
that this sequel would improve her already sagging career.
of advice to the poor woman: try to stay off potential box
office and critics’ bombs. As if Cold Creek Manor (2003)
wasn’t bad enough a mistake, she had to star in the
multiple Razzie-winner Catwoman (2004). And with this latest
big screen disaster, we really hope Stone would learn her
matter how hard we try, we cannot bring ourselves to like
this sequel more. When the common movie-goer cannot care less
about its plot development or its characters’ fates,
we can only hope no one would come up with the idea of making
a third movie. Laying hands off another sequel would be the
true basic instinct of any filmmaker.
(Wasted talents are aplenty in this messy and indecisive redundant
Review by John Li