Sliver Preview

Jamie and Patrick creep around the water fountain of the local mall and espy Pretzel Stand Rachel doling out hot, fresh pretzels. “So what’s the plan, again? I’m not sure I understand,” Jamie says, pulling uncomfortably as his tie, his muscles nearly popping the buttons on his shirt. “Ok, so Rachel is in the book,” explains Patrick, “just like St. Mary’s Church. So our doppelgangers must have left something with her… some bread crumb on the trail to wherever this leads. So it’s your turn to buy a piping hot pretzel and… you know… see what happens.” Jamie arches an eyebrow, unconvinced, while Patrick shrugs. It’s worth a shot. Jamie ambles up to Rachel and from the distance Patrick sees him lean over and say something probably super sauve. They laugh at a joke and Rachel swats him playfully. Excellent. With that she takes off her apron and beckons Jamie to follow her, who quickly flashes a thumbs up to Patrick. What the hell? Jamie didn’t get a clue? Not a slip of paper with some page number on it? Where the hell are they going? Patrick continues to follow the pair as they head through the park. They skip stones on the pod, spend some time in the museum, ride bicycles in the rain, and finally settle in for some gelato at a hip gelato spot. Why is Jamie going on a full on date when they need to be tracking down their diabolical fiends? And why are laughing and living so much? Finally Jamie and Rachel head towards a tall building on the edge of the park. Patrick’s had enough and hurries to catch up. Time to stop whatever erotic thrills Jamie might have on his mind and get this investigation back on track. That’s right! We’re replacing sci-fi in the cycle this year. While we love sci-fi, it’s also a genre that can fit in action, horror, etc. So we removed it as a standalone and replaced it with Achievement Unlocked. What that means is that we will attempt to go after a certain subtype of film this year in that slot. This year that subtype will be the Thrills and Chills of the 90’s. So of course what exemplifies 90’s fun like a 90’s erotic thriller. Enter Sliver, based on the book by Ira Levin. It’s about a big ol’ building that’s probably some metaphor for a penis or something. Let’s go!

Sliver (1993) – BMeTric: 58.0; Notability: 46 

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 3.2%; Notability: top 18.9%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 5.7% Higher BMeT: Super Mario Bros., RoboCop 3, Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III, Leprechaun, Mr. Nanny, Cop & ½; Higher Notability: Last Action Hero, Hocus Pocus, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit, RoboCop 3, The Meteor Man, Rising Sun, Coneheads, We’re Back! A Dinosaur’s Story, Loaded Weapon 1, Life with Mikey, Son of the Pink Panther, The Pickle, The Three Musketeers, Indecent Proposal; Lower RT: RoboCop 3, Son of the Pink Panther, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit, Mr. Nanny, Hexed, Best of the Best II, Carnosaur, Father Hood, Weekend at Bernie’s II, Calendar Girl; Notes: Existed mostly as a sub-5.0 film so not at all a surprise it kills the BMeTric. This is actually one of the more impressive statistical performances for a BMT this year, so I hope it is a good BMT.

Leonard Maltin – 2 stars – Stone moves into a tall, slender, and luxurious Manhattan apartment building with a history of unusual deaths. Writer Berenger pursues her, though she’s more interested in Baldwin; however, she soon comes to suspect one of the two is a killer. Robert Evans’ handsomely produced sex-and-murder mystery (emphasis on sex) was severely damaged by reshooting (which changed the identity of the killer), but Joe Eszterhas’ script was already pretentious and exploitative. From Ira Levin’s novel.

(That is a huge review for the Leonard Maltin books. So basically, glossy, cut-to-ribbons, and pretentious. Sounds like quite the erotic thriller …)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdSIyG6euDY/

(I think that is actually a really compelling trailer. The idea of moving into an apartment, where someone is watching you at all times and manipulating the entire building, and perfect murders are staged as accidents by this all knowing eye? What is still pretty relevant in our far more technologically advanced age today.)

Directors – Phillip Noyce – (Known For: Salt; Clear and Present Danger; Patriot Games; Above Suspicion; Dead Calm; Rabbit-Proof Fence; Blind Fury; The Quiet American; Catch a Fire; Heatwave; Echoes of Paradise; Newsfront; Backroads; Future BMT: The Saint; The Giver; The Bone Collector; BMT: Sliver; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Director for Sliver in 1994; Notes: Australian. The Quiet American had an Oscar nominated performance, and he’s still going strong in both movies and television.)

Writers – Ira Levin (novel) – (Known For: Rosemary’s Baby; The Stepford Wives; The Boys from Brazil; Deathtrap; A Kiss Before Dying; Bunny Lake Is Missing; Critic’s Choice; No Time for Sergeants; Future BMT: The Stepford Wives; A Kiss Before Dying; BMT: Sliver; Notes: Nominated for a Tony for his play Deathtrap. Started in anthology television like Lights Out.)

Joe Eszterhas (screenplay) – (Known For: Basic Instinct; Jagged Edge; F.I.S.T; Showgirls 2: Penny’s from Heaven; Betrayed; Music Box; An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn; Telling Lies in America; Hearts of Fire; Big Shots; Szabadság, szerelem; Checking Out; Future BMT: Showgirls; Nowhere to Run; Flashdance; BMT: Basic Instinct 2; Sliver; Jade; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Screenplay, Worst Supporting Actor, Worst New Star, and Worst Original Song for An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn in 1999; Winner for Worst Screenplay for Showgirls in 1996; Winner for Worst New Star for An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn in 1999; and Nominee for Worst Screenplay in 1984 for Flashdance; in 1994 for Sliver; and in 1996 for Jade; Notes: Born in Hungary, he was originally a journalist, most notable at Rolling Stone. Got into screenwriting after writing Charlie Simpson’s Apocalypse which a studio executive loved.)

Actors – Sharon Stone – (Known For: Basic Instinct; Casino; Total Recall; The Quick and the Dead; The Disaster Artist; Alpha Dog; The Laundromat; Lovelace; Antz; Broken Flowers; Above the Law; Deadly Blessing; Bobby; Allan Quatermain and the Lost City of Gold; Life on the Line; The Mighty; Stardust Memories; Mothers and Daughters; Fading Gigolo; A Little Something for Your Birthday; Future BMT: Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Cold Creek Manor; King Solomon’s Mines; Diabolique; Action Jackson; Intersection; Gloria; Sphere; He Said, She Said; Last Dance; Last Action Hero; Year of the Gun; BMT: Catwoman; Basic Instinct 2; Sliver; The Specialist; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actress in 1995 for Intersection, and The Specialist; and in 2007 for Basic Instinct 2; Winner for Worst Screen Couple in 1995 for Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles, and The Specialist; Nominee for Worst Actress in 1988 for Allan Quatermain and the Lost City of Gold; in 1994 for Sliver; and in 2000 for Gloria; Nominee for Worst Supporting Actress, and Worst Screen Couple for Catwoman in 2005; and Nominee for Worst New Star in 1997 for Diabolique, and Last Dance; Notes: Stone was still on the rise at this point. She would be nominated for an Oscar in 1996, get married in 1998, and her major stardom would be over by 2000.)

William Baldwin – (Known For: Forgetting Sarah Marshall; Backdraft; The Squid and the Whale; Flatliners; Born on the Fourth of July; Internal Affairs; Bulworth; Aftermath; Curdled; Maximum Impact; Noise; Three of Hearts; Relative Values; Adrift in Manhattan; Welcome to Acapulco; Park; The Broken Key; Dino Time; You Stupid Man; Say Nothing; Future BMT: Virus; BMT: Fair Game; Sliver; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Actor for Sliver in 1994; and Nominee for Worst Screen Couple for Fair Game in 1996; Notes: You could argue this is right at the beginning of him almost being a legit movie star. He would star in eight films in the 90s, but then his leading career would be over by 2000. The second youngest of the Baldwin brothers.)

Tom Berenger – (Known For: Inception; Platoon; Training Day; Major League; The Big Chill; Faster; Born on the Fourth of July; Gettysburg; Sniper: Ultimate Kill; Supervized; Quad; Mr. Goodbar; The Sentinel; D-Tox; Deadly Pursuit; Eddie and the Cruisers; The Dogs of War; The Substitute; Fear City; Someone to Watch Over Me; Future BMT: Major League II; Chasers; Sniper; Shattered; Rustlers’ Rhapsody; BMT: Sliver; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor for Sliver in 1994; Notes: He would do Sniper, Sliver, Gettysburg, Major League II, and Chasers in a three year span as his second peak as an actor. Nominated for an Oscar for Platoon.)

Budget/Gross – $30–40 million / Domestic: $36,300,000 (Worldwide: $116,300,000)

(Failed domestically to some extent, but I would bet they were reasonably happy with the international take. Erotic thrillers really were cooking at the time.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 11% (3/27): Sliver is an absurd erotic thriller with technobabble and posits prime Sharon Stone as a professional book nerd.

(Well, I don’t know if we really need to posit anything about Stone. She’s an editor at a publishing house, and I think quite believable in the role. At least the same believability as Robin Wright being a journalist in Message in a Bottle. Now whether she would be attracted to Baldwin however… Reviewer Highlight: Sharon Stone goes cold in this botched thiller-maybe from the effort of pretending that her character, a beauteous book editor, would fall for the preening young computer wizard played by the vacant-and-proud-of-it William Baldwin. – Michael Sragow, New Yorker)

Poster – In Your Endo

(The artistic effect of this is good. And the colors are stark, particularly with the font work. I think in each of its parts I like it, even if the whole seems a bit confused. So can’t go much lower than a B-. I wish it meshed a bit more. I can’t stress how hilarious the names on the poster are for an erotic thriller. It’s like “Sharon Stone, nice. Billy Baldwin, uh, ok. Tom Berenger, lol what?”)

Tagline(s) – You like to watch… don’t you

(I’m trying to figure out just how good this one is. It’s obviously a play on the concept of the film, but also plays on the very idea of an erotic thriller. So even though it’s not a fun pun like I generally like, it might be the cleverest tagline I’ve come across. I’m going to do it. A+.)

Keyword – ambiguous ending

Top 10: War Dogs (2016), Shutter Island (2010), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Interstellar (2014), Inception (2010), Joker (2019), The Dark Knight (2008), Titanic (1997), American Psycho (2000), Kong: Skull Island (2017)

Future BMT: 63.7 The Crow: City of Angels (1996), 63.0 Blair Witch (2016), 56.8 The Transporter Refueled (2015), 53.6 Lost Souls (2000), 26.6 Broken City (2013), 21.3 The Warrior’s Way (2010), 21.2 The First Power (1990), 19.5 Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), 19.3 Now You See Me 2 (2016), 7.5 The Thirteenth Floor (1999);

BMT: Serenity (2019), Fast & Furious (2009), Rambo: Last Blood (2019), Ghost Ship (2002), Countdown (2019), Death Wish (2018), Truth or Dare (2018), Queen of the Damned (2002), Sliver (1993), Jason X (2001), Alone in the Dark (2005), The Devil Inside (2012), Never Die Alone (2004)

(I wonder how much of the peak is because of “twist” endings like The Sixth Sense, and surprise endings like Blair Witch? Hard to tell from the lists. I am excited for The First Power, a film I’ve never heard of where a murderer named Patrick comes back to life to kill again!)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 19) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Sharon Stone is No. 1 billed in Sliver and No. 3 billed in Catwoman, which also stars Frances Conroy (No. 5 billed) who is in The Wicker Man (No. 4 billed), which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 5 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => 1 + 3 + 5 + 4 + 5 + 1 = 19. If we were to watch The Glass House we can get the HoE Number down to 11.

Notes – According to Phillip Noyce, Sharon Stone and William Baldwin disliked each other and demanded that their scenes be filmed separately whenever possible.

While filming a kissing scene, Sharon Stone bit William Baldwin’s tongue with such force that he couldn’t talk properly for days afterwards.

During filming, a crew was sent to Hawaii to film an active volcano for the opening credits. During the flyover, the volcano erupted, and the helicopter carrying the crew crashed. No one was killed, but all film was lost. The opening credit scene is referenced in the film by the crystal volcano in Zeke’s Room. (I think this was supposed to be the ending as well)

As part of the re-shot ending, Tom Berenger and Polly Walker were required to film a scene wearing S&M gear. Both actors refused as this wasn’t in their original contract, so the scene had to be filmed by doubles. (And … isn’t in the film from what I remember?)

Johnny Depp and Val Kilmer turned down the role of Zeke Hawkins. (Kilmer would have been cool)

The script originally called for full male frontal nudity, but William Baldwin changed his mind after the scenes had been shot. (hmmmmmm)

Joe Eszterhas’s original ending was incomprehensible to test audiences and an alternate ending had to be quickly devised and shot. Eszterhas cracked out five different endings in three days. (So apparently this was the reveal that Stone is in the helicopter with Zeke indicating that she bought into his lifestyle or something)

Sharon Stone signed for the lead for $2.5 million.

Ira Levin was reluctant to sell the rights to his book. He had only been pleased with the movie adaptation of Rosemary’s Baby (1968) out of all the attempts to film his novels. When producer Robert Evans, who had produced Rosemary’s Baby, got wind of this, he sent Levin a copy of Roman Polanski’s autobiography, with all the mentions of Evans’ salvaging the film highlighted. The ploy worked and Levin sold the rights to Evans for $250,000.

The helicopter crash in which Mike Benson (II), Chris Duddy and pilot Craig were involved, was documented in the 6th episode of the 2nd season of I Shouldn’t Be Alive (2005). (Huh cool)

Kurt Russell turned down the role of Jack Lansford. (Also a better choice … this entire film outside of Stone seems like B-movie second-choices)

According to his autobiography, producer Robert Evans initially wanted Roman Polanski to direct the film. Since Polanski will not return to the United States, Evans planned on having a second unit director shoot some footage of New York, whilst Polanski would direct the film in Paris. (gross)

The original script called for a different ending in which Zeke (William Baldwin) turns out to be the killer, but was re-shot when it fared poorly with test audiences.

Written by Ira Levin, author of Rosemary’s Baby, there are similarities: both are set in an expensive New York City hotel (albeit this one is super modern, the other is old style) that the main character, a woman, moves into; the woman meets a friendly resident who dies not long after meeting them; there is a secret (or two) hidden within the building and its inhabitants that takes the entire film for her to learn about.

Awards – Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Picture (Robert Evans, 1994)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Actor (William Baldwin, 1994)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Actress (Sharon Stone, 1994)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor (Tom Berenger, 1994)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actress (Colleen Camp, 1994)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Director (Phillip Noyce, 1994)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Screenplay (Joe Eszterhas, 1994)

Perfect Stranger Preview

The Cool Girls stroll on up to the table and look disdainfully at Rich and Poe, “Who are these total nerd babies, Steve?” the leader asks before snidely remarking to Rich and Poe, “Where are your nerd diapers and baby glasses, nerd babies?” But Steve steps in and reminds her that for their scheme to work they needed a couple more bodies, “Besides, Adestria, these nerds are cool. Right, nerd baby mates?” he says winking at them. Rich and Poe are starting to get a bad feeling about this. What scheme is he talking about? Just then, Steve steps up on a table and calls for quiet. The cafeteria hushes. “Attention,” he announces, “We already run this school and now it’s time to take it over for real,” and with that he snaps his fingers and all the kids rise up as one. My god, Rich and Poe think, it’s like Turbulence (the 1997 smash hit) up in here and they best make sure this plane don’t crash. Not to mention that things will go from bad to worse if their cover is blown. Suddenly a group of kids bring a teacher to the cool girls and push her to the ground, “We caught one, Adestria. What should we do with her?” But Adestria waves them away, “just get rid of her. I don’t care.” Panicked at the implication, Rich and Poe step in, “Uh, we’ll do it,” Poe says quickly. “Yeah, you can trust us to take care of it,” Rich adds. Adestria looks suspiciously at them but Steve reassures her once again, “They’re cool… They’re just a couple of nerds,” he insists. “But how can you trust these perfect strangers,” she whispers. Steve looks at them and nods, “Because they are my perfect nerd baby strangers.” That’s right! I’m ready to replace my couch cushions because those edges are about to be worn out. We are (finally, IMO) watching the star-studded, thrill-a-minute Perfect Stranger starring Halle Berry and Bruce Willis. It’s probably best known in the bad movie world for having a terrible twist ending. Which can only mean that the hero is in fact the villain. The second worst twist of all time (just after the entire film being a dream). This is my guess before watching the film, but it’s almost certainly correct. It never fails to infuriate. Let’s go!

Perfect Stranger (2007) – BMeTric: 41.2; Notability: 33 

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(The BMeTric is a lot higher than I would have thought, mainly because the number of votes is way higher than you would thought. The more I add these notabilities in here the more I realize having a score above 50 is really a truly rare thing. We should savor those more than we have previously I think.)

Leonard Maltin – 2 stars –  Muckraking undercover reporter Berry, frustrated by a setback on a major story, takes on a more personal investigation after a girlhood friend a hers is murdered. Her high-tech pal Ribisi helps trace emails that point to high-profile ad exec Willis as a likely suspect, so Berry gets a job working for him, hoping to get close. She does. Slick thriller gets sicker as it goes along, leading up to a revelation you can’t see coming – because it doesn’t make much sense.

(Literally everything about this film is about how bad the last twist is lol. Which is why we chose it in the end. Kind of perfect … stranger.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGH5w7cXGl8/

(It looks very techno-erotic-thriller-y. It is going to be interesting to watch another erotic thriller starring Bruce Willis that was made what? 15 years after The Color of Night? That’s pretty funny.)

Directors – James Foley – (Known For: Fear; Glengarry Glen Ross; At Close Range; Confidence: After Dark; The Corruptor; After Dark, My Sweet; Two Bits; Future BMT: Who’s That Girl; BMT: Fifty Shades Darker; Fifty Shades Freed; Perfect Stranger; The Chamber; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Director in 1988 for Who’s That Girl; in 2018 for Fifty Shades Darker; and in 2019 for Fifty Shades Freed; Notes: Originally a music video director, he was tapped for the second and third Fifty Shades films after E. L. James negotiated closer control over the writing and production of the series.)

Writers – Todd Komarnicki (screenplay) – (Known For: The Professor and the Madman; Sully: Miracle on the Hudson; BMT: Perfect Stranger; Notes: Was the voice of the Wheaton athletics during his time there.)

Jon Bokenkamp (story) – (Known For: The Call; Future BMT: Taking Lives; BMT: Perfect Stranger; Notes: Creator of the television series The Blacklist which he’s been executive producer for over 100 episodes.)

Actors – Halle Berry – (Known For: John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum; Kingsman: The Golden Circle; X-Men; Cloud Atlas; Die Another Day; X-Men: Days of Future Past; X-Men: The Last Stand; X-Men 2; Robots; Monster’s Ball; Jungle Fever; The Call; The Last Boy Scout; Executive Decision; Boomerang; Losing Isaiah; Bulworth; Why Do Fools Fall in Love; Things We Lost in the Fire; Future BMT: The Flintstones; Dark Tide; B*A*P*S; Gothika; Kidnap; Father Hood; Kings; The Rich Man’s Wife; Race the Sun; Strictly Business; Frankie & Alice; BMT: Catwoman; Movie 43; New Year’s Eve; Perfect Stranger; Swordfish; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actress for Catwoman in 2005; Nominee for Worst Actress in 2014 for Movie 43, and The Call; and Nominee for Worst Screen Couple for Catwoman in 2005; Notes: She was the first African-American to win Best Actress for her work in Monster’s Ball. She was first runner up in Miss USA as well.)

Bruce Willis – (Known For: Pulp Fiction; Motherless Brooklyn; Sin City; Split; Looper; Die Hard; Twelve Monkeys; The Fifth Element; Moonrise Kingdom; The Sixth Sense; The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part; RED; Die Hard 4.0; Sin City: A Dame to Kill For; Unbreakable; Ocean’s Twelve; Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle; The Expendables; Grindhouse; Planet Terror; Future BMT: Look Who’s Talking Too; Vice; The Cold Light of Day; The Prince; Extraction; Lay the Favorite; Precious Cargo; Breakfast of Champions; Reprisal; First Kill; Once Upon a Time in Venice; Cop Out; The Bombing; Acts of Violence; Marauders; Fire with Fire; Striking Distance; Rock the Kasbah; Rugrats Go Wild; The Story of Us; 10 Minutes Gone; Blind Date; Billy Bathgate; Loaded Weapon 1; Surrogates; Sunset; The Jackal; Last Man Standing; Tears of the Sun; Hostage; Glass; Grand Champion; Four Rooms; BMT: North; A Good Day to Die Hard; Color of Night; The Whole Ten Yards; Perfect Stranger; G.I. Joe: Retaliation; The Bonfire of the Vanities; Hudson Hawk; Mercury Rising; Death Wish; Armageddon; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Screenplay for Hudson Hawk in 1992; Winner for Worst Actor in 1999 for Armageddon, Mercury Rising, and The Siege; Nominee for Worst Actor in 1992 for Hudson Hawk; in 1995 for Color of Night, and North; and in 2019 for Death Wish; and Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor for Glass in 2020; Notes: Seemed like he was going to maybe have a little comeback with Glass, but that didn’t do too well. Does a ton of straight-to-VOD stuff, like Nic Cage, and is notoriously difficult to work with it is said.)

Giovanni Ribisi – (Known For: Avatar; Saving Private Ryan; Lost in Translation; Ted; The Bad Batch; The Virgin Suicides; That Thing You Do!; Cold Mountain; Public Enemies; Lost Highway; Ted 2; Selma; The Gift; Boiler Room; Contraband; Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow; Results; SubUrbia; Heaven; The Dead Girl; Future BMT: The Mod Squad; A Million Ways to Die in the West; Masked and Anonymous; Flight of the Phoenix; I Love Your Work; Basic; The Big White; All the Rage; 10th & Wolf; The Other Sister; Middle Men; BMT: Perfect Stranger; The Postman; Gone in Sixty Seconds; Gangster Squad; Notes: His entire family, including his twin sister, is involved in show business. He became famous as Phoebe’s half-brother on Friends.)

Budget/Gross – $60 million / Domestic: $23,984,949 (Worldwide: $73,534,117)

(That isn’t so great. I wonder how much of that is just Willis’ paycheck. The domestic take is awful, but it is merely a $20 million or so hit once you add in worldwide.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 10% (14/142): Despite the presence of Halle Berry and Bruce Willis, Perfect Stranger is too convoluted to work, and features a twist ending that’s irritating and superfluous. It’s a techno-thriller without thrills.

(Again, most of the time all of the reviews are just hung up on the ending. This ending better be just the worst thing you’ve ever seen. Reviewer Highlight: That’s right, it’s a techno thriller that treats the already clichéd topic of Web abuse with an idiotic sense of discovery. – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone.)

Poster – Perfect Stranger 2: Even More Perfect (A-)

perfect_stranger

(I have a sneaking suspicion this poster has little to do with the actual plot of the film, but I’ll let this slide because I think it’s actually kind of cool and interesting. Better font and I’d be raving about it.)

Tagline(s) – How Far Would You Go To Keep A Secret? (D)

(Wait a sec… is this a second rhetorical question tagline in a row? Turbulence had one and then this one too. We really have stumbled onto something potentially interesting to look into. They went a little long and cliche for this, though. Like this could be a tagline for like twenty different terrible films. Thus it is terrible.)

Keyword – erotic thriller

PerfectStranger_erotic thriller

Top 10: Eyes Wide Shut (1999), Basic Instinct (1992), Original Sin (2001), Fatal Attraction (1987), Basic Instinct 2 (2006), Wild Things (1998), Unfaithful (2002), Indecent Proposal (1993), Body Double (1984), Sliver (1993)

Future BMT: 60.3 Sliver (1993), 49.4 In the Cut (2003), 39.2 Diabolique (1996), 37.8 Never Talk to Strangers (1995), 35.6 Indecent Proposal (1993), 32.4 The Crush (1993), 28.9 Original Sin (2001), 28.0 Deception (2008), 23.2 Goodbye Lover (1998), 18.1 Whispers in the Dark (1992);

BMT: Basic Instinct 2 (2006), Color of Night (1994), Body of Evidence (1992), Perfect Stranger (2007), Jade (1995), Twisted (2004)

(You can see the early 90s boom, and for real the genre fell off a cliff. I don’t think it’ll ever recover. It is a genre of a time when the US became somewhat accepting of sex in film, but didn’t respect itself enough to care about the kind of sex it was showing in film. I think that makes sense.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 13) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Giovanni Ribisi is No. 3 billed in Perfect Stranger and No. 2 billed in Gone in 60 Seconds, which also stars Nicolas Cage (No. 1 billed) who is in The Wicker Man (No. 1 billed), which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 5 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => 3 + 2 + 1 + 1 + 5 + 1 = 13. If we were to watch Last Man Standing, and The Glass House we can get the HoE Number down to 11.

Notes – The filmmakers filmed three different endings to the film, each with a different character as the killer. (ha!)

The film’s original setting was New Orleans. During pre-production, Hurricane Katrina struck; the script was quickly rewritten to take place in New York City.

Miles’ phone number (seen when Hill reads the text message on Ro’s mobile phone in the restaurant) is shown as 917-867-5309–a nod to Tommy Heath’s classic rock hit “867-5309/Jenny”, which repeats the phone number (sans area code) in the refrain.

As Rowena enters World Trade Center building Seven (26:15), where Hill’s agency is located, Larry Silverstein the actual owner of the entire WTC complex make a cameo appearance at the security desk.

Miles says that it will take Ro three minutes and fourteen seconds to download the spyware, “but that’s an approximation.” 3.14 is an approximation of pi. (That’s dumb)

The film includes extensive product placement for Sony Vaio, Reebok, Heineken, and Victoria’s Secret. (Sweet, the Victoria’s Secret one is off the chain).

Heidi Klum: The Victoria’s Secret Angel that introduces Harrison Hill (Bruce Willis) at the Victoria’s Secret party.

Jade Preview

Rich leans against the tree. He didn’t remember leaving the arcade and entering a dense forest, but it’s all good. His tree monster nanny goddess is here. “You must be Elvira. I’m Rich,” he says as he kisses her hand. “Pleasure,” she says and draws him deeper into the forest. Rich stumbles over a branch and Elvira catches him. “Just a Stumblebum Stanley,” they both say at the same time. “That’s my favorite saying,” again in unison. Elvira blushes. Rich rubs his neck, “I’m Stanley… I mean Rich,” He says and they both laugh. They soon find themselves discussing more of their favorite things: justice, love, kittens, and brown paper packages tied up in string. They attend a baseball game and end up on the kiss cam. They are driven apart by how different they are, but soon realize that those very differences are what make their love beautiful and they find themselves smooching in the rain. Suddenly Elvira is crying. Rich moves to wipe her tears away, “did I do something wrong?” he asks, but Elvira shakes her head. “Only made me love you,” she says, “which is why this is so hard.” While Rich wants to make a crude joke about exactly what else is hard, he doesn’t. Has he grown as a person? Is this… love? Elvira proceeds to tell Rich of Gruber’s dark plan to use her to deliver Rich and Poe into his clutches. “You must hate me,” she wails. But he can’t hate her. Never her. “Elvira, I’m just a boy, standing in front of an ancient tree monster nanny asking her to love him. I know our love is forbidden, but will you… will you make out with me… hard?” Gasping, with tears streaming down her face she whispers, “the hardest.” That’s right! We’re watching Jade. So out of the Friedkin pan and into the Friedkin as we go two in a row with the Exorcist director. This time it’s an erotic thriller (my personal favorite genre of BMT film) and apparently Siskel did not like this in the least. In fact he named it his least favorite film of 1995. Interestingly Ebert didn’t have it in his bottom five at all. His least favorite from that year was Mr. Payback… which I don’t think can be physically watched anymore… like literally I think that’s a lost film. Anyway, I’m just hoping we get some steamy action. Let’s go!

Jade (1995) – BMeTric: 45.1

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(I feel like ten thousand votes is sooooooo low in this context. How isn’t the genre of 90s erotic thriller not a more attractive bad movie option … they are almost always hilarious.)

Leonard Maltin – 2 stars –  While investigating the brutal murder of a wealthy San Franciscan, assistant D.A. Caruso realizes to his dismay that his old flame (Fiorentino, married to his good friend Palminteri) may be involved. Sordid mystery/thriller from the seedy pen of Joe Eszterhas; has its moments (including an exciting S.F. car chase) but never rises above the mire. Unrated video edition has 12m. additional footage.

(Two stars is … interesting. Also this description sounds a lot more tame than I expected. I was hoping for a little more information about the sex scenes. Are they sexy? Are they not sexy? Yeah I checked his review of Color of Night and that’s about the extent of the discussion of sex scenes, so I’m not sure what I was expecting really.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yQ1L97C9FU/

(I have no idea what this film is about, but I’m excited. It look like a super erotic thriller. And by that I don’t mean super erotic, I mean a super “erotic thriller” and of the terribleness that genre implies.)

Directors – William Friedkin – (Known For: The Exorcist; The French Connection; Killer Joe; To Live and Die in L.A.; Cruising; Sorcerer; Bug; The Boys in the Band; Rampage; The Brink’s Job; Future BMT: Deal of the Century; The Hunted; Blue Chips; Rules of Engagement; BMT: Jade; The Guardian; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Director, and Worst Screenplay for Cruising in 1981; Notes: Second Friedkin film in a row. Started in television directing an episode of The Alfred Hitchcock Hour.)

Writers – Joe Eszterhas (written by) – (Known For: Basic Instinct; Jagged Edge; F.I.S.T.; Music Box; Betrayed; Hearts of Fire; Telling Lies in America; Szabadság, szerelem; Future BMT: Showgirls; Sliver; An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn; Nowhere to Run; Flashdance; BMT: Basic Instinct 2; Jade; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Screenplay, Worst Supporting Actor, Worst New Star, and Worst Original Song for An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn in 1999; Winner for Worst Screenplay for Showgirls in 1996; Winner for Worst New Star for Ringmaster in 1999; and Nominee for Worst Screenplay in 1984 for Flashdance; in 1994 for Sliver; and in 1996 for Jade; Notes: Famous for his erotic thrillers. He used to write for Rolling Stone before starting to write screenplays. Showgirls and Jade were released less than a month apart in 1995.)

Actors – David Caruso – (Known For: First Blood; Twins; An Officer and a Gentleman; King of New York; Session 9; Mad Dog and Glory; Kiss of Death; Future BMT: Proof of Life; Thief of Hearts; BMT: Jade; Hudson Hawk; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst New Star in 1996 for Jade, and Kiss of Death; Notes: Definitely most famous now for his starring role in CSI: Miami. Prior to that he was mostly notable for his part in NYPD Blue.)

Linda Fiorentino – (Known For: Men in Black; Dogma; After Hours; Vision Quest; The Last Seduction; What Planet Are You From?; Where the Money Is; The Moderns; Chain of Desire; Future BMT: Larger Than Life; Liberty Stands Still; Kicked in the Head; Unforgettable; Gotcha!; Ordinary Decent Criminal; Queens Logic; BMT: Jade; Notes: Apparently won her role in Men in Black in a poker game with Barry Sonnenfeld.)

Chazz Palminteri – (Known For: The Usual Suspects; A Bronx Tale; Legend; Stuart Little; Running Scared; A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints; The Last Dragon; Analyze This; Hoodwinked!; Jolene; Bullets Over Broadway; Underdogs; The Perez Family; Hurlyburly; Henry & Me; Yonkers Joe; The Dukes; Future BMT: In the Mix; Down to Earth; Diabolique; Arthur and the Invisibles; The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure; A Night at the Roxbury; Mulholland Falls; Innocent Blood; Noel; Oscar; Faithful; BMT: Little Man; Jade; Notes: Has two children who act. His son Dante Palminteri has actually been in quite a few things, most notably Sharknado 2.)

Budget/Gross – N/A / Domestic: $9,851,610

(That looks like a disaster. I don’t think mid-90s erotic thrillers were expensive per se, but I also don’t think you are making them for like … $4 million, which is what would be what was required for this to be a success.)

#27 for the Thriller – Erotic genre

jade_eroticthriller

(The sweet spot for erotic thrillers was ‘92 to ‘96. It really seems like eventually everyone shrugged and was like “yeah that’s enough of that.” Recent examples include The Boy Next Door, but the best of them all I think was Color of Night. Can’t wait to see what the dying breath of the 90s boom looked like.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 14% (4/29): An ostensible erotic thriller that’s largely neither erotic nor thrilling, Jade marks one of several unfortunate low points for aggressively sexual mid-’90s cinema.

(You see that’s what I’m looking for. Just tell me whether it is sexy. We all know most erotic thrillers aren’t, just say it. Reviewer Highlight: Writer Joe Eszterhas’s follow-up to his Showgirls fiasco is every bit as hopeless, and this time he takes some good actors down with him. – Bruce Diones, New Yorker)

Poster – Sexy Dangerous (A)

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(I actually like this poster quite a bit. The framing is artistic, the color scheme is good, and the font is… different? Right? That ‘J’ is just a little too long (if you know what I mean), right? I’m not imagining it? It’s telling me a story and that story is sexy dangerous.)

Tagline(s) – Some fantasies go too far. (B-)

(Just not clever enough. The ‘J’ on the poster is more clever than this… it’s just a tad bit too long, right?…. RIGHT?!)

Keyword(s) – female full frontal nudity; Top Ten by BMeTric: 85.8 Piranha 3DD (2012); 73.6 Showgirls (1995); 66.1 The Canyons (2013); 65.7 Rape Me (2000); 62.5 9 Songs (2004); 61.7 Srpski film (2010); 57.7 Wild Orchid (1989); 55.3 Color of Night (1994); 54.9 Nurse 3D (2013); 54.5 The Informers (2008);

(Some of those aren’t happening. We’ve seen The Canyons (at least … I have, for the Razzies if I recall correctly). Showgirls I’ve also seen, but we need to rewatch it (for sure). And Wild Orchid kind of rounds things out. The rest are bigger question marks.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 24) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: David Caruso is No. 1 billed in Jade and No. 7 billed in Hudson Hawk, which also stars Bruce Willis (No. 1 billed) who is in The Whole Ten Yards (No. 1 billed), which also stars Natasha Henstridge (No. 4 billed) who is in Ghosts of Mars (No. 1 billed), which also stars Jason Statham (No. 3 billed) who is in In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (No. 1 billed), which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 4 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => 1 + 7 + 1 + 1 + 4 + 1 + 3 + 1 + 4 + 1 = 24. If we were to watch Unforgettable we can get the HoE Number down to 13.

Notes – According to Joe Eszterhas’s autobiography he hated the final film. Director William Friedkin changed Eszterhas’s script so much, he threatened to remove his name from the credits. Paramount settled with him by giving him a “blind script deal” worth two to four million dollars. Later, Friedkin admitted that he did virtually rewrite the script, but Friedkin also said that this film was his most favorite film he had ever made. (Probably made it better)

Linda Fiorentino initially turned down the script because she didn’t want to play a prostitute. She changed her mind when her character was changed through rewrites. (See, Friedkin’s work already working out)

Warren Beatty turned down the role of David Corelli. (That would have been fun)

David Caruso’s second starring role of 1995 after Kiss of Death (1995). Both pictures were box-office disasters. Ironically, Caruso had left the highly successful NYPD Blue (1993) to star in these films. (And then he became a CSI mega-star)

When O.J. Simpson’s Trial of the Century ended with a Not Guilty verdict, he stated to the press that he was going to see this movie. (Weird … oh yeah, he also saw Showgirls which was written by the same person, and came out like three weeks before)

Kenneth Branagh was the first choice for the part of Matt Gavin. (Whaaaaaaaaa?)

2nd film that Michael Biehn did with William Friedkin. The first was Rampage (1987). (Ebert loved that film)

Kevin Tighe who appears as district attorney Arnold “Cliff” Clifford in Jade was also in another 48 hrs when he played an internal affairs officer working with the DA looking at Nick Nolte’s character Jack Cates on a manslaughter charge which turns out to be a frame up. Both movies were composed by James Horner and set in San Francisco. (Cooooooool)

The rest of the notes just aggressively gave away the end of the film

Awards – Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Screenplay (Joe Eszterhas, 1996)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst New Star (David Caruso, 1996)

Species Preview

There had been some thought that this week might be time for a BMT Live! Rings came out to absolutely horrifying reviews (see what I did there?) and we had to think quick on whether we should act. The answer: not until we see the reviews for Fifty Shades Darker. It would be irresponsible to let it go by without giving it a chance at BMT Live! glory. It deserves it. So instead we head into SciFi/Fantasy and get to do a set of films that I’ve been eyeing for awhile. That’s right, we’re watching Species and Species II. These films promise three things: nudity, a scene where someone kisses someone else and their tongue bursts through the back of their skull, and… uh… nudity again. So basically I’m super duper duper excited. Let’s go!

Species (1995) – BMeTric: 34.9

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species_rv

(This plot basically shows the 2011 inflection and regression to the mean. The BMeTric is amazingly consistent through time (35 basically). Hey, since these plot are getting a little boring I’m going to start a new series with this. This is to put movies into groups based on what I see. The first group, for Species, is: Below Average and Perplexingly Popular. Basically this movie ultimate doesn’t seem too bad (rating of 5.8), but the sheer number of votes (nearly 60 thousand) gives an impressive BMeTric overall.)

Leonard Maltin – 2.5 stars – DNA-tampering scientists at a Utah facility ultimately get theirs after creating a murderous creature, complete with tentacles, who’s packages like a blond centerfold. Fast and not without entertainment value, but don’t look at yourself in the mirror too closely if you end up defending it. Direction is somewhat sturdier than the script, which has its share of (we think) unintentional howlers.

(I mean, I’m all about unintentional howlers Leonard, you know me. Films with the horrible villain-scientists are the best though. Like Bats I hope these guys are real megalomaniacal assholes.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbaYnTLuX7U

(Alright, that looks pretty rad. Pretty old school though. Just a short rundown of the movie: Contact, communication, experiment, termination, escape, pursuit, mutation, confrontation, outcome unknown. Species! Yeah …. That sounds about right, and I’m on board!)

Directors – Roger Donaldson – (Known For: The Bank Job; The Recruit; The Bounty; Thirteen Days; No Way Out; The World’s Fastest Indian; Cadillac Man; White Sands; Smash Palace; BMT: Dante’s Peak; Cocktail (BMT); Species; The Getaway; Justice; The November Man; Notes:  Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1989 for Worst Director for Cocktail. His son Chris represented New Zealand in the 100 meter sprint in 1996 and 2000 Olympics. Now that’s a fun fact.)

Writers – Dennis Feldman (written by) – (Known For: Just One of the Guys; BMT: Species II; Virus; Species; The Golden Child (BMT); Notes: Brother of Randy Feldman who wrote Tango & Cash and son of producer Phil Feldman.)

Actors – Natasha Henstridge – (Known For: The Whole Nine Yards; Bounce; BMT: Species II; Ghosts of Mars (BMT); The Whole Ten Yards; Maximum Risk; Adrenalin: Fear the Rush; Species; Steal; Deception; Dog Park; Notes: According to an interview she gave in Empire she turned down roles in both Independence Day and Men In Black after reading the scripts and thinking, “What is this shit?”)

Michael Madsen – (Known For: The Hateful Eight; Kill Bill: Vol. 1; Reservoir Dogs; The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe; Sin City; Kill Bill: Vol. 2; Die Another Day; WarGames; Wyatt Earp; Thelma & Louise; Donnie Brasco; The Doors; Free Willy; The Natural; Pauly Shore Is Dead; BMT: BloodRayne; Species II; My Boss’s Daughter; Scary Movie 4 (BMT); Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home; Hell Ride; House; Species; Notes: A published poet (he has released eight books of poetry) and photographer.)

Ben Kingsley – (Known For: The Jungle Book; Schindler’s List; Shutter Island; Hugo; Knight of Cups; Iron Man Three; Ender’s Game; A.I. Artificial Intelligence; Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb; Lucky Number Slevin; The Walk; The Dictator; Gandhi; Eliza Graves; Tuck Everlasting; Sexy Beast; The Boxtrolls; Life; Sneakers; Oliver Twist; The Triumph of Love; Robot Overlords; Dave; House of Sand and Fog; Searching for Bobby Fischer; Learning to Drive; Bugsy; Transsiberian; BMT: The Love Guru (BMT); BloodRayne; A Sound of Thunder (BMT); Thunderbirds; The Last Legion; Species; War, Inc.; The Ten Commandments; Exodus: Gods and Kings; Suspect Zero; Slipstream; Rules of Engagement; Self/less; Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time; Notes:  Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2009 for Worst Supporting Actor for The Love Guru, War, Inc., and The Wackness; and in 2007 for BloodRayne. Nominated for four Oscars, winning one for Gandhi.)

Budget/Gross – $35 million / Domestic: $60,074,103 (Worldwide: $113,374,103)

(Of course, otherwise there is no chance this is franchised. Just thinking of the storyline I don’t think they would even think of this these days. It almost comes across as exploitation, and with erotic thrillers being basically a totally defunct genre I don’t really see it. Erotic Sci-Fi Horror … how’d this make $100 million?!)

#17 for the Creature Feature genre

creaturefeature_17

(Ooooo right on the cusp of a giant surge. Obviously this was fueled by Jurassic Park (not this one, but creature features). Critters 2 and King Kong Lives are recent BMT examples, and recently the genre is back with Jurassic World and Godzilla. The new King Kong should continue that trend if it gets good reviews.)

#10 for the Sci-Fi Horror genre

scifihorror_10

(Ahead of its time! And since about 1995 it has been a pretty consistently released genre. It just doesn’t make a ton of money. I mean, Species is the 10th highest grossing film ever! It is at quite the nadir at the moment, but things like Predator and Alien should sustain it for at least a while longer. It isn’t totally VOD yet!)

Rotten Tomatoes – 34% (12/35): No consensus yet.

(Ooooo I love giving consensuses: A smart take on schlocky sci-fi horror which ultimately devolves into soft-core pornography with a clunky premise. My favorite part of a review is from Ebert himself where he describes the alien as a: “[d]isgusting, slimy morph-creatures with rows of evil teeth, whose greatest cultural achievement is jumping out at people from behind things.” I don’t like jump scares either Ebert.)

Poster – Our Sklog is Up (B+)

species_ver4

(While it is cheesy in a lot of ways, it is also epic. Really raw image with great font, nice balance, and coloring. Looks like a knockoff of the Alien poster. Still good though.)

Tagline(s) – Two decades ago scientists sent a message to space. This… is the reply. (B)

(Too long and detailed (we need to know that it was two decades ago?), but I like the suspense. Got some cleverness in too with the ellipses.)

Keyword(s) – interspecies sex; Top Ten by BMeTric: 67.3 Howard The Duck (1986); 46.7 Caligula (1979); 35.9 Decoys (2004); 35.8 Splice (2009); 34.9 Species (1995); 22.9 Ta paidia tou Diavolou (1976); 20.1 The Dunwich Horror (1970); 18.5 Une vraie jeune fille (1976); 17.2 The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat (1974); 17.0 The Beast Within (1982);

(This is real everyone. This is the real top keyword for this movie on IMDb, yet again proving that IMDb keywords are useless … also false! Howard the Duck never has sex with a human. Liars! This list is a house of lies!)

Notes – During the production, MGM opted not to shoot the “nightmare train” sequence to keep costs down. H.R. Giger was not willing to accept that, however, so he spent $100,000 of his own money to finance the sequence.

For the scene in which Sil is ‘born’ from the cocoon, the train set was built upside down. Natasha Henstridge, totally naked and covered in KY Jelly lubricant, was pushed through the cocoon, and the shot was flipped upside down afterwards, to achieve the effect of her falling out.

Xavier (Ben Kingsley) Fitch says that the alien signal was received by the Arecibo radio telescope exactly nineteen years after an outbound message was transmitted. Since the transmissions traveled at the speed of light, that means that the alien solar system is approximately nine light-years from Earth. There are two stars which are likely candidates, Sirius and Luyten 726-8A. (now these are the fun facts I like to see)

Fitch’s comment that they made Sil female to be more docile is an in-joke that belies his ignorance. In every predatory species known, the female is always more aggressive. (I don’t believe this is true)

Michael Madsen and Marg Helgenberger were allowed to improvise their sex scene.

SIL is actually S1L, the medical cell in the lab where the DNA was grown.

An early draft of the script had the young Sil calmly killing a friendly cab driver. In an effort to keep the audience’s sympathy for her character (and to make the murder of the porter more shocking) the scene was changed to Sil killing a tramp in self defense after he attempts to attack her. (There was another BMT film like this, where there clearly was just no kills by the “bad” protagonist for almost the entire movie … but I can’t remember what it was, although I do remember it was a terrible idea.)

When Sil watches TV at the motel, she flips through different channels and they all show various things she will do later in the film. Like having sex, changing her hair, showing off her body, etc. (coooooool)

Basic Instinct 2 Preview

This week we move right back into our Calendar cycle for the Razzie entry. Since the calendar is amazing and affords us amazing choices for movies each week, we of course were able to choose a past Razzie Worst Picture winner! That’s right, we are watching 2006’s Basic Instinct 2! Quite literally the sequel that no one was asking for (and perhaps many begging Hollywood not to make). Released on March 31st, it beat out The Skulls for the honor. Thank God. We’ve (obviously) already seen The Skulls. Let’s go!

Basic Instinct 2 (2006) – BMeTric: 72.4

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BasicInstinct2_RV

(Obviously considering the current score it isn’t too shocking that the historical profile is pretty mundane. And now that we know all about the regression to the mean even the vote/rating plot is kind of boring. Reaching 4.0 is kind of expected. Up to 4.3 is starting to get a bit above average. It could be because of the recent erotic thriller comeback … but nah, probably just random.)

Leonard Maltin – 2 stars –  Long-gestating sequel to the notorious 1992 hit isn’t the embarrassment you might have expected – or hoped for. What should have been high camp is instead a rather dull psychological-sexual thriller in which slippery novelist Catherine Tramell is up to her old tricks in London when a male companion turns up dead in her car. Did she or didn’t she? Stone makes the best of this and looks sensational while the impressive British cast tried hard to keep it afloat.

(Wow, I was not expecting the classic two star Maltin for this one. I like his creeper comment on how good Stone looks, keep it up Maltin. Dull is bad, but perhaps he was so distracted by the gorgeous magnificence of Stone that he couldn’t focus on the enthralling psycho-sexual thrill-ride that was this film? We’ll have to see.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhNFW1AXLOg

(My God. So 2006, the music, the way they shot London, the crazy car stunts in the middle of a purported erotic thriller. The entire thing almost seems like a parody of itself in a weird way. Like they made a trailer for a fake movie sequel for April Fools Day.)

Directors – Michael Caton-Jones – (Known For: This Boy’s Life; Doc Hollywood; Rob Roy; Memphis Belle; City by the Sea; Scandal; BMT: Basic Instinct 2; The Jackal; Notes: He has bad-mouthed this film and Sharon Stone several times in interviews over the years and openly admits he only did it for the money. Despite this, he does a commentary for the film, which is very exciting. Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2007 for Worst Director for Basic Instinct 2)

Writers – Leora Barish (written by) – (Known For: Desperately Seeking Susan; BMT: Basic Instinct 2; Notes: Currently resides in New York and runs a sustainable farm school for vetrens. Won the Razzie Award in 2007 for Worst Screenplay for Basic Instinct 2)

Henry Bean (written by) – (Known For: Internal Affairs; The Believer; Deep Cover; Noise; Almayer’s Folly; BMT: Basic Instinct 2; Notes: Also directed The Believer and wrote a novel adapted from his screenplay. Won the Razzie Award in 2007 for Worst Screenplay for Basic Instinct 2)

Joe Eszterhas (characters) – (Known For: Basic Instinct; Jagged Edge; Betrayed; F.I.S.T.; Telling Lies in America; Music Box; Hearts of Fire; Children of Glory; BMT: Basic Instinct 2; Showgirls; Sliver; Jade; Nowhere to Run; An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn; Flashdance; Notes: Bad movie legend. He started his career in journalism, but was mired in some controversy, including losing a ‘false light’ case in front of the Supreme Court. Won the Razzie Award in 1999 for Worst Supporting Actor, Worst Screenplay, Worst New Star, and Worst Original Song for An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn; Won the Razzie Award in 1996 for Worst Screenplay for Showgirls; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1996 for Worst Screenplay for Jade; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1994 for Worst Screenplay for Sliver; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1984 for Worst Screenplay for Flashdance)

Actors – Sharon Stone – (Known For: Alpha Dog; Casino; Basic Instinct; Total Recall; The Quick and the Dead; Lovelace; Antz; Bobby; Broken Flowers; Above the Law; Fading Gigolo; The Mighty; Stardust Memories; Irreconcilable Differences; The Muse; Beautiful Joe; Bolero; BMT: Catwoman; Basic Instinct 2; Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Sliver; Cold Creek Manor; The Specialist; King Solomon’s Mines; Diabolique; Action Jackson; Intersection; Simpatico; Gloria; Sphere; Last Action Hero; He Said, She Said; Deadly Blessing; Last Dance; Notes: Nominated for an Oscar for Casino. Bad movie legend, as you can see from her Razzie street cred. Frequent visitor to the fair island of Martha’s Vineyard.)

Sharon Stone Razzie Cred: Won the Razzie Award in 2007 for Worst Actress for Basic Instinct 2; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2005 for Worst Supporting Actress for Catwoman; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2005 for Worst Screen Couple for Catwoman; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2000 for Worst Actress for Gloria; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1997 for Worst New Star for Diabolique, and Last Dance; Won the Razzie Award in 1995 for Worst Actress for Intersection, and The Specialist; Won the Razzie Award in 1995 for Worst Screen Couple for The Specialist; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1994 for Worst Actress for Sliver; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1988 for Worst Actress for Allan Quatermain and the Lost City of Gold

Also stars David Morrissey and David Thewlis (Remus Lupin in Harry Potter)

Budget/Gross – $70 million / Domestic: $5,971,336 (Worldwide: $38,629,478)

(Oh my … oh … oh my. That is not great. That is just … not very good.)

#33 for the Thriller – Erotic genre

eroticthrillerAnalysis

(Sigh, if only I lived in the early 90’s once again. Fatal Attraction (1987) and Basic Instinct (1992) ushered in a heyday of erotic thrillers including BMT legend Color of Night (1994). The waves in the graph are interesting, like they saturate the market and then feel a cooling off period. And each wave smaller than the last. A slowly dying genre. But one I hope to see revived once again in the future. Until then though, enjoy one of the worst I suppose)

#43 for the Thriller – Serial Killer genre

serialkillerthrillerAnalysis

(oooof, what was our fascination with serial killers in the 2000s? The show Dexter was right in there as well. This comes right before one last hurrah in the genre before a complete and utter collapse. And recently (The Following, Hannibal) the genre has gotten play in a little wave, but is probably dying again. Looking through things it was basically the Saw series sustaining that, and looking at the actual money being made the genre is kind of moving to microbudget/VOD releases I think. The movie, incredibly, marks an attempt at two 90s genres that are both now on the brink of total collapse. Fascinating.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 7% (10/150): Unable to match the suspense and titilation of its predecessor, Basic Instinct 2 boasts a plot so ludicrous and predictable it borders on “so-bad-it’s-good.”

(Sorry, I’m getting a bit distracted by what appears to be a typo in the consensus there. Apparently “titillation” is spelled with two L’s. Very very odd. Sign me up for a ludicrously plotted erotic thriller all fucking day though.)

Poster – Sklogal Instinct 2 (C-)

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(Just like with The Day the Earth Stood Still I think it’s generally a mistake to have a skewed perspective in the poster (which is the effect that the weird shadow creates). I do like the idea that the poster is from the point of view of someone getting murdered and we are looking through his half-closed eyelids. Interesting and artsy and polished in that way. The brown tone isn’t great and too much going on, though, so overall slightly below average. If they had kept it a bit simpler it probably would have gotten a much better grade.)

Tagline(s) – Everything interesting begins in the mind. (F… I think.)

(I can’t believe this ended up on the poster… what does it mean?! It’s an unsolvable riddle. This is one of the worst and most incomprehensible taglines I’ve ever seen for a film.)

Keywords – psychiatrist top 10 BMeTric examples: 73.9 Nutty Professor II: The Klumps (2000), 72.4 Basic Instinct 2 (2006), 71.5 Halloween: Resurrection (2002), 68.3 Psycho (1998), 66.6 Exorcist II: The Heretic (1977), 62.8 Abduction (2011), 61.3 Pulse (2006), 56.9 Dr. T and the Women (2000), 55.9 Poltergeist III (1988), 54.5 Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)

(I shouldn’t have been so surprised to see all the horror films on the list. Psychology, of course, often plays a prominent role in horror. Either in the form of dealing with past trauma or by those attempting to understand the machinations of madmen. The Halloween series, interestingly, often has both. Donald Pleasence plays a prominent role in five of the Halloween films, whereas in the long running series the “survivors” of each movie often deal with the psychological aftermath in subsequent movies. Not a pure keyword, but interesting.)

Notes – Michael Douglas declined to reprise his role from the original movie, admitting that he felt he was too old for the part. (yah think?)

Robert Downey Jr. was set to star but had to drop out when he was charged with drug possession. Kurt Russell was attached at some point but bailed out because he felt uncomfortable with the nudity. Pierce Brosnan refused to play the male lead role because of distasteful elements. Bruce Greenwood was set to star but dropped out because he hadn’t been signed on yet and feared the actors strike. Benjamin Bratt was banned by Sharon Stone for not being a good actor. (Poor Benjamin Bratt. Also, these casting choices must go back a while. RDJr. hasn’t been busted for drug possession since 2001)

Before agreeing to perform the full-frontal nude scene, Sharon Stone invited a friend over to watch the original Basic Instinct (1992). During the film, Stone, by her own admission, stripped down totally naked and asked her friend if she could “still pull it off.”

Rupert Everett publicly expressed his anger after being turned down to star opposite Sharon Stone by MGM CEO Chris McGurk for being “pervert who would never be accepted by the American public in this role”.

The film was originally intended to be made in 2000. (there we go)

Sharon Stone agreed to reprise her role of Catherine Tremell in a “pay or play” arrangement, meaning she got fully paid, whether the film would ultimately be made or not.

Jude Law, Ewan McGregor, Gabriel Byrne, Javier Bardem, Benicio Del Toro, Viggo Mortensen and Aaron Eckhart were all in the running to star opposite Sharon Stone at one point. (So many people considered and yet they ended up with David Morrissey… huh)

David Cronenberg was in talks to the direct the film for some time. John McTiernan was set to direct after Cronenberg bailed out due to producer Mario Kassar banning him from using his own cinematographer, production designer, and the rest of his usual team. (sound like a lot of people were banning other people)

Awards – Won the Razzie Award for Worst Picture

Won the Razzie Award for Worst Actress (Sharon Stone)

Won the Razzie Award for Worst Prequel or Sequel

Won the Razzie Award for Worst Screenplay (Leora Barish, Henry Bean, Joe Eszterhas)

Nominated for the Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor (David Thewlis)

Nominated for the Razzie Award for Worst Screen Couple

Nominated for the Razzie Award for Worst Director (Michael Caton-Jones)