In our weekly seriesAnatomy of a Scene's Anatomy, we're going to be taking a look at (in)famous sexscenes and nude scenes throughout cinema history and examining their construction, their relationship to the film around it, and their legacy. This week, it's Dennis Hopper's 1990 neo-noir The Hot Spotwhich has a whopping nine nude scenes in it, but all anyone ever talks about is one...

Anatomy of a Scene's Anatomy: Jennifer Connelly Comes of Age in 'The Hot Spot'

Oh Jennifer Connelly, I'll let my pal Billy Madison fill in the blanks...

Like many men now approaching middle age who came of age in the late 80s, I worshipped and adored Jennifer Connelly. Though her performance left something to be desired, I fell hard for this busty brunette when, as a wide-eyed seven year old—I first saw Labyrinth in the theater. As someone who was too young to see a lot of movies, I managed to see Dario Argento's Phenomena long before I should have and decided that Jennifer Connelly was the woman I was going to marry.

Both The Rocketeer andCareer Opportunities came along when I was smack dab in the middle of puberty and I managed to see the latter more times than anyone in history solely because of Jennifer. Then word got to me that she had actually been naked in a movie. "It's this really boring movie," says my buddy Frank. "But shetakes off all her clothes." I've gotta know what this movie is and plan my whole life around the next time it's gonna be on HBO. "It's called Once Upon a Time in America," Frank said. "They'll definitely show it again."

So I waited and recorded it and managed to see it and my first thought is, "That's not even her!"

Anatomy of a Scene's Anatomy: Jennifer Connelly Comes of Age in 'The Hot Spot'

Without the internet, I was left to wonder if Jennifer Connelly would ever go naked on film, not knowing that she had in fact done just that, right under my nose. 1990's The Hot Spot was a total blind spot for me until about two years later when I caught the famous skinny dipping scene on one of the pay channels in 1993 or 1994...

My first thought was, "You got me again Connelly!" Yet another nude scene shot from behind, probably with a body double. But then, seconds later, there she was, in all her glory...

My mom was gonna be so proud of my choice in a future wife. We were gonna give her some beautiful grandkids.

It was incredible, though, and director Dennis Hopper was a mad enough genius to bring it to us. If you've never seen The Hot Spot,meaning you've only fast forwarded to the good parts here on Mr. Skin, I have to give it my highest recommendation provided you understand a few thingsgoing into your first viewing.

First things first, Don Johnson is totally miscast in the lead. As a matter of fact, Johnson was miscast because he had initially signed on to make the film based on a script by Mike Figgis (Leaving Las Vegas). Three days before shooting is to commence, director Dennis Hopper tosses Figgis' script and instead uses a completely different script. This was based on a book titled "Hell Hath No Fury," and was set to be filmed in the late 60s or early 70s with Robert Mitchum in the lead.

Mad respect to Don Johnson, the man's had an incredible career, but he is no Robert Mitchum. He's not fit to touch the hem of Mitchum's garment. Robert Mitchum was a total badass who lived and breathed danger. He carried in his eyes the weight of a life lived hard, and you can't fake that, no matter how hard you try. So, while you're watching it, pretend it's Mitchum.

Second, understand that it's a script from an era when women were seen as little more than seductresses or housewives, but even more than that, it bleeds noir-ish black and white. The women here are either virginal objects of desire, like Connelly's Gloria Harper, or femme fatalelove 'em and blackmail 'emtypes like Virginia Madsen's Dolly Harshaw. There's no way for a man with a dirty past to live happily ever after with either, simultaneously paintingboth of the women as architects of his downfall.

This sort of thing would be right at home in that era, though Hopper's obvious advantage over his forebears is his ability to exploit that R-rating. And exploit he does. Virginia Madsen went on to slam Hopper for the amount of nudity he added to the script, telling People Magazine at the time of the film's release that she was "very embarrassed by" the amount of nude scenes that she does in the film...

She's not wrong.Madsen is nude a lot in this movie.In fact, she goes nude SEVEN times in this movie. That's a rather surprising amount of nudity considering that, in all deference to Ms. Madsen, the only nude scene anyone remembers from this film is Jennifer Connelly's nude debut. This is an earth-shattering nude debut for the ages, not unlike those we've talked about before in regard to both Scarlett Johansson and Halle Berry. Unlike Under the Skin, however, I think Connelly's nude debut trumps the film around her.

Uma Thurman was originally cast in this role but left before cameras rolled, and Connelly agreed to do the nudity required in the script. As she told Stephen Schaefer from USA Today in an interview at the time of the film's release, "The nudity was hard for me and something I thought about...but it's not in a sleazy context." While there has been some debate about whether or not that's her bending over and showing off absolutely everything in the wide shot, but given her penchant for doing nudity in the ensuing years, we here at Mr. Skin stand behind the assumption that it is indeed her...

You honestly can't ask for more from a nude debut. Though I sadly was never able to convince Jennifer Connelly to marry me, it seems that she and Paul Bettany have a wonderful marriage and I wish them all the best. Believe it or not, I am still in touch with reality.

One last fun fact about The Hot Spot:Johnson's wife at the time, Melanie Griffith, gave birth to their daughter Dakota Johnson while the film was being made. No wonder she's so comfortable with nudity.

Catch up with our other editions of Anatomy of a Scene's Anatomy...

The "Real Sex" ofDon't Look Now

Scarlett Johansson's Nude Debut inUnder the Skin

The 2 Very Different Sex ScenesofBasic Instinct

How Halle Berry's Nude Debut Led Her toMonster's Ball

HowMulholland Dr.'s Legendary Lesbian Scenes Deepen the Film's Mystery

Showgirlsand the Dangers of High Camp

Rosario Dawson Laid Bare for Danny Boyle'sTrance

Katie Holmes Makes The Gift Worth Remembering