Shots Across the Bow

A Reality Based Blog

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Sharon Stone’s Crotch and Its Lame Sequel

One of the stories making the rounds of the blogosphere concerns the tanking ofBasic Instinct 2 and Paul Verhoeven's assessment of who is to blame.
Anything that is erotic has been banned in the United States. Look at the people at the top. We are living under a government that is constantly hammering out Christian values. And Christianity and sex have never been good friends.

First, you have to admit that any director who can turn a movie about lapdancing into a stultifyingly dull 3 hour movie may not actually have a good grasp on what is erotic.

Nicholas Meyer chimes in as well.
We're in a big puritanical mode. Now, it's like the McCarthy era, except it's not 'Are you a communist?' but 'Have you ever put sex in a movie?


Let's take a look at our supposedly sexually oppressed, Puritanical culture.
  • Tonight on TV on Cinemax, ActionMax, and MoreMax, there are about 4.5 hours of "adult drama," AKA soft pron. I didn't even look at HBO or Showtime.
  • The biggest selling issue of Sports Illustrated features nearly naked women cavorting on beaches the world over. It sells millions of copies.
  • MTV programming consists largely of putting attractive young men and women in close proximity for a long period of time, and filming the results, including moments of intimacy.
  • Playboy, Penthouse, and similar magaines are sold in gas stations, convenience stores, and book stores.
  • Television programming allows far more nudity and sexuality than at any time other time in our history, and rumblings from the FCC notwithstanding, I see no real effort to stop it. Yeah, there was a huge controversy over Janet Jackson's breast, but you can see almost as much on any given episode of Las Vegas.
  • I'm not going to say anything about the internet, because it's too easy of a target, but if you can't find pictures or movies of everything you ever wanted to see (and quite a few you didn't want to see), you aren't loking very hard.
  • Listen to music; listen to the actual words. Country, R&B, rock,alternative, rap, it doesn't matter. Sex has always been a huge part of music; the difference is that today it is much more blatant about it.
  • Let's take a look at advertising. Sex has always sold, but now sex itself is being sold. Often, the images used to sell a product have absolutely nothing to do with the product at all. They don't need to; they just need to be sexy.

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that the pervasiveness of sexuality throughout our society is either good or bad; that's for another discussion down the road. What I am saying is that only somebody totally wrapped up in their own little world could possibly think we live in a puritanical society.

So, if we aren't all puritans, then why have big budget Hollywood erotic thrillers bit the dust?

Could it be that they're all full of crap, and we can see better work on cable, or for free on the internet?

Let's take a look and see, shall we. The neat thing is that we need go no further than the article we're already talking about. Here again is Mr. Verhoeven:
I like erotic thrillers. But in the last 10 years, I haven't found any scripts that interested me.

Here's the really scary part. The article mentions two upcoming erotic thrillers. One is a Disney flick starring Jennifer Garner. Yep, the mouse is doing pron. I can't wait.

Okay, I can.

It gets worse. The other one stars Ace Ventura himself, Jim Carrey. The thought of a naked Jim Carrey making love to a beautiful woman is enough to drive me to embrace celibacy for a decade or so.

The bottom line on Basic Instinct is this; in the original, we, along with Michael Douglas, didn't know whether Ms. Trammel was a killer or not. Along with the sex, there was a mystery. Yeah, we were pretty sure she did it, but the movie toyed with us just as she toyed with Douglas. However, at the end of the movie, we find out for certain that she i a killer, and the mystery is over. Now 2 decades later, they make a sequel where there's no mystery, only the sex, and while Sharon Stone is still a durn good looking woman, that's not enough to carry a movie as lame as this one.

However, we'll never hear Hollywood admit this; it's much easier to blame a "puritannical public" than it is to actually admit you made a crappy movie.

Posted by Rich
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Monday, April 28, 2003

Living glass

I first learned of Dale Chihuly through Ben, an artist friend of my ex wife. He had taped a special on the artist, and we watched it one night over at his house.

Chihuly turns glass into living, breathing sculptures of light and fantasy.

Entry to one of his studios.


Another ceiling installation.

I'm not much of a fan of most modern art; it leaves me cold. I don't know the vocabulary, and too many of today's artists feel insulted if you expect them to provide a glossary. Chihuly makes pieces that grab your eye, and bring you inside the art; he stil,subscribes to the old school, that art is about beauty.

I can get into that.

Take a stroll through his site, and see just how soft and warm cold, hard, glass can be when shaped by a master.

Posted by Rich
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