THERE’S a lot about the modern world that turns me right off – and now it seems there’s even less to turn me on.

Apparently we are now seeing fewer and fewer sex scenes at the cinema and on TV.

Though there are still some erotic flicks like Fair Play, we are apparently seeing fewer and fewer sex scenes at the cinema and on TV

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Though there are still some erotic flicks like Fair Play, we are apparently seeing fewer and fewer sex scenes at the cinema and on TVCredit: Netflix
And surprisingly, it's Gen Z objecting - Ulrika agrees that some steamy scenes can be awful, but could you do Fifty Shades without any sex?

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And surprisingly, it’s Gen Z objecting – Ulrika agrees that some steamy scenes can be awful, but could you do Fifty Shades without any sex?Credit: Scope Features

That’s right — sex on screen is waning, slacking and drooping.

It’s gone a bit flaccid. What on earth is the world coming to

Campaigner Mary Whitehouse might have been excited by this worrying trend but I can tell you that this old dear is not.

I know it’s normally the older ­generations that complain about sex and nudity.

I mean, who can forget the stage farce No Sex Please, We’re British from 50 years ago, which kept the narrative alive that the Brits were prudes?

But now it seems it’s the young ’uns who are objecting to it.

A recent study by US university UCLA surveyed 1,500 people aged up to 24, and astonishingly they said they want to see less sex on screen.

Instead, what they are after are more stories of platonic relationships. This lot don’t even want romance!

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They feel they are not being accurately portrayed and reflected on the big screen, poor lambs.

And there was I, thinking they were sexually liberated and living their best lives.

Good old Gen Z! Trust them to want to suck all the fun out of a night at the cinema.

Nearly half of them said that romance is overused by the media, and the same number believe sex is not necessary for the plot. (Tell that to the makers of Fifty Shades . . . )

Of course, I hear what they are saying.

How many times have you watched a film or TV drama and the director has decided to throw in some gratuitous sex scenes for the hell of it?

Raw and instinctive

Some are plain awful and are just there to keep us titillated enough to persist with the storyline.

That kind of nonsense puts me off too.

Julia Roberts says she sees zero artistic value in getting naked on screen - true to her word, she has a double in Pretty Woman

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Julia Roberts says she sees zero artistic value in getting naked on screen – true to her word, she has a double in Pretty WomanCredit: Alamy
Sarah Jessica Parker was apparently the only cast member of Sex And The City to refuse to bare herself

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Sarah Jessica Parker was apparently the only cast member of Sex And The City to refuse to bare herselfCredit: Channel 4
But the show still had its memorable moments with her

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But the show still had its memorable moments with herCredit: Alamy

But I am — as you might know by now — a proponent of nudity, and I definitely want a greater openness about sex.

And let’s face it, if we don’t see it, if we don’t normalise it, it will become confined to the cutting-room floor and we will be in danger of forgetting that we all have bodies.

Who knows, we might even stop thinking about intimacy altogether.

It’s not just the young ones who are starting to put their collective feet down and turning their backs on nudie-rudie stuff on screen.

The list of Hollywood stars who are no longer prepared — and sometimes never were — to appear naked or engage in filming sex scenes appears to be growing.

Julia Roberts says she sees zero artistic value in getting naked on camera, claiming that acting with her clothes on is a performance but acting with her clothes off is a documentary.

A bit of an extreme analogy but, true to her word, she had a body double in Pretty Woman.

Chris Pratt, who, for the record, was a stripper once, now says that after finding religion he has changed his ways and won’t do nudity or sex scenes any more.

I guess you can’t argue with God.

US actress Anna Kendrick has nothing against sex scenes but won’t do nudity and Sarah Jessica Parker was, apparently, the only cast member of Sex And The City to refuse to bare herself.

I respect their principles without exception, especially as we all now know that there was a time when actors were not always afforded the right or the personal choice of how they wanted their bodies represented on the big screen.

Since the #MeToo scandal broke, we have heard horrendous stories of performers — predominantly women — who were forced or pressurised into engaging in scenes which went against their moral or artistic judgment, all because they feared they would lose their jobs or would quite simply be blacklisted.

There is no denying a lot of abuse and coercion went under the radar.

So, to that end, the fact that artists now feel they have the right and the strength of voice to object to the misuse of their bodies when they feel vulnerable is definitely a step in the right direction.

And of course, nowadays there are intimacy co-ordinators on set who choreograph whole sex scenes and help to ease nerves and protect dignities, which can only be good.

But that does all feel a bit too premeditated and orchestrated for my liking.

Explicit 9 1/2 Weeks was a flick that took our breaths away

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Explicit 9 1/2 Weeks was a flick that took our breaths awayCredit: REX
And the BBC's Normal People had sex scenes that just felt natural

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And the BBC’s Normal People had sex scenes that just felt naturalCredit: BBC

In many cases, sex is supposed to be raw and instinctive, which is pretty hard to achieve if you’ve got to remember not to put your hand on someone else’s ha’penny at a certain part in the scene.

I can’t imagine much of that went on during the making of Basic Instinct, which was as rousing as your wildest dreams.

And who can forget the explicit 9½ Weeks, which took most of our breaths away?

The point is, sex scenes are not inherently negative. They don’t always damage the viewer or actors.

It doesn’t always follow that they come about through exploitation.

Sex scenes more often than not add colour to the story and depth to the characters.

The great thing about such scenes is that while some might be pretentious, a tad unrealistic, too glamourous and based on unattainable perfection, we all know that there are some great ones that sensitively depict all the different kinds of sex there can be.

Sex in real life is often awkward, funny and messy — and it needs to be represented as such.

I, for example, loved the naturalness of the sex scenes in BBC series Normal People.

And what about the awkwardness of the opening sex scene of Bridesmaids, when Kristen Wiig straddles Jon Hamm and there was enough pretentious moaning, thrusting and fakery to make you think one of them was having a coronary?

That made me laugh and cry in equal measure. If anything, I’d love more of that, please.

And there have been some stupendous scenes that are forever etched on my mind, whether it was Eyes Wide Shut or Fatal Attraction — they more than enhanced the films, they were the storyline.

Megan Fox isn’t keen on stripping off on screen, apparently because she now worries about what her sons will think if they see it.

And that would be a fair point if it didn’t then raise another, which is that if we take sex scenes out of films, if we remove nudity, we are basically telling the next generation that intimacy doesn’t exist.

Or worse still, that it shouldn’t be seen, that it should be kept hush-hush.

That can’t be right. Surely we want them to see bodies of all different shapes, sizes and ages?

Bridesmaids had a painfully awkward - and real - sex scene right at the beginning

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Bridesmaids had a painfully awkward – and real – sex scene right at the beginningCredit: Supplied
And it's a crucial moment in cinema to have Emma Thompson, 63, reflect on her body

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And it’s a crucial moment in cinema to have Emma Thompson, 63, reflect on her bodyCredit: Alamy

In among the many awkward sex scenes in the film Good Luck To You, Leo Grande there’s a brilliant one where, aged 63, Emma Thompson stands naked in front of a mirror.

It was a crucial moment in cinema because it wasn’t pornographic or erotic — it was normal, natural and beautiful.

What I can’t get my head around is people’s increasing objection to sex scenes while they’re all too happy to sit through films saturated in violence.

Some people are quite happy for their kids and teens to watch people having their heads blown off, but a glimpse of stocking is looked on as something shocking.

We’ll more readily accept guns, shootings, knives and explosions than we will two people enjoying a bit of hanky-panky.

That can’t be right. Sex is a natural part of life — or it certainly should be.

There’s nothing pervy about enjoying sex scenes and, at the risk of being lambasted by the whole of Gen Z, I’d like there to be more great sex on screen.

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It doesn’t have to be provocative, revelatory or explicit. Subtle and understated works too.

Granted, we shouldn’t just have sex for sex’s sake — but please can we have sex and nudity for all our sakes?