Sharon Stone says after she saw a rough cut of Basic Instinct 2 she pushed for more of the wild sex scenes that had been cut to be put back in the film. "I wanted a lot of sex in the sequel, and I wanted more nudity," Stone said in an interview with The Telegraph. "I was coming from a really kinky place." I suppose if the sex and nudity are there because they make sense from a standpoint of story arc and character development it makes perfect ... oh, come on, who are we kidding? 

Basic Instinct made Stone famous more because she flashed her hoo-hoo at the camera than because of her acting. Her post-Basic Instinct film career has been decidedly uneven. She got the Oscar nod a decade ago for her role in Casino. Since then, we have Diabolique (yawn), The Mighty (a decent enough film that bombed at the box office), The Muse (meh), and a bunch of crapedelic filler (voice acting the "blind art teacher" on Higglytown Heroes? Did she have a high credit card bill to pay off or something?) 

Then she turned in a good performance in Broken Flowers with Bill Murray, and suddenly she's hot property again. She had before her the opportunity to take one of two paths. Down the first path was the possibility of heading into her late-40s career renaissance with grace and aplomb, showing the world her innate acting talents, putting her leg-crossing-hoo-hoo-baring days behind her. Down that path lay, perhaps, some plum film roles for an attractive, older actress. She could have gone head-to-head with Meryl Streep, Sissy Spacek, Rene Russo and Glenn Close; why, in another 15 years or so, she could have perhaps been another Dame Judi Dench, perennially Oscar-nominated for playing brass-balled, tough-yet-classy older women (we'll forgive Dench the temporary insanity that caused her to think playing opposite Vin Diesel in The Chronicles of Riddick was a good plan).

Down the second path, glittering with cheap Las Vegas neon promising a second chance to be the flavor of the month, was the opportunity to capitalize on sex, nudity and the base shock value of "Holy geez - she's naked and engaging in sexual acts - and she's past 40!" The opportunity to titillate, rather than to engage in serious dramatic acting; unfortunately, no one apparently told Stone that sex and nudity only carry your career so far, especially once you hit that age where people tell you with condescending kindness you're "aging gracefully" -- the getting older equivalent of "she has a great personality". 

The problem with this path is two-fold: audiences will come out to see a naked 47-year-old hoo-hoo baring actress once, but the film itself damn sure better deliver more than a naked Stone for 90 minutes; and once she's played out that hand, what's next? How many roles are there in Hollywood for older women to be naked nymphos in films? I'd wager not a whole lot. If she doesn't turn in some serious acting, she may find herself with rapidly diminishing returns on her investment in kink. Interesting side note: an IMDB search for Sharon Stone turns up this Sharon Stone first, but the next choice on the list, Sharon Stone (III) has one and only one film to her credit - it's called Too Much Flesh. The first Sharon Stone might want to pay heed.

Stone has some decent acting chops when she lets go with it - she doesn't need to resort to the shock value of nudity to make a comeback. I'd have much rather seen her stick with more serious, dramatic roles, than resort to this kind of sadly ridiculous "look at me, no clothes!" behavior. She has four films lined up on her post-Basic Instinct 2 plate. Here's hoping for less sex and more acting in those.

[ via Movie City News ]