Basic Instinct 2 - Review
Review by Jack Foley
EVEN by Hollywood’s standards 14 years is a long time to wait for a sequel so it’s hardly surprising to reveal that Basic Instinct 2 is something of an anti-climax.
Set in London, this psychological thriller finds Sharon Stone’s bisexual novelist Catherine Tramell at the centre of yet another possible murder investigation following the mysterious death of a top sports star (played by Stan Collymore).
Determined to nail her, Scotland Yard detective Roy Washburn (David Thewlis) employs respected criminal psychologist Dr Michael Glass (David Morrissey) to profile her but it doesn’t take long before Glass’s fragile existence is shattered.
The doctor is quickly drawn to Tramell’s sexual allure and finds himself being sucked into her web of lies and deceit, whereupon skeletons from his own past are revealed that place him at the centre of a separate murder investigation.
While Paul Verhoeven’s original Basic Instinct successfully seduced audiences with its genre-defining mix of sex and violence, Michael Caton-Jones’ tedious follow-up seems to be suffering from old age.
It’s plot is as threadbare as Tramell’s underwear drawer, while the sex scenes fail to arouse anything other than yawns.
What’s worse is that the sequel is practically a re-run of the first film with key moments such as the notorious date-rape sequence between Michael Douglas and Jeanne Tripplehorn vurtually replicated here.
Of the performances, Morrissey acquits himself fairly well in a thankless role, while Thewlis provides the most interesting presence as a potentially crooked cop.
But Stone’s Tramell has become a tedious presence to be around, swanning about the place in almost cartoonish fashion and stripping the character of any real intrigue.
Under Caton-Jones’ camp direction, the whole affair feels like a double entendre with even London’s Gherkin building serving as a phallic presence on the capital’s skyline, while Leora Barish and Henry Bean’s script is laughably bad.
Audiences too young to remember Verhoeven’s original may have some fun with this sequel but for the most part Basic Instinct 2: Risk Addiction feels like very soppy seconds indeed.