In 1990, the MPAA introduced the NC-17 rating to provide an outlet for legitimate adult fare non-pornographic motion pictures with content deemed too strong for the under-17 crowd. The first movie released with an NC-17 was Henry & June, whose financial failure was widely blamed on the new rating. After that, all potentially-lucrative films receiving an NC-17 made the cuts required by the MPAA to earn an R. Now, in 1995, there's Showgirls, the most significant test of the NC-17's commercial viability to date. Helmed by Paul Verhoeven (Total Recall, Basic Instinct) and written by Joe Eszterhas (Jagged Edge, Basic Instinct), this movie is going into wide release with the adult rating. Too bad it's one of the worst films of the year.

James Berardinelli
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