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Genre Thriller
Year: 2009
Obsessed is obsessed with Fatal Attraction in a Lifetime movie kind of way. It aims to be sleek, sexy and enticing, yet ends up like a Tween-friendly, tongue-in-cheek office comedy. The star-studded cast includes: Idris Elba, Ali Larter, Beyonce Knowles and a leaner Jerry O’Connell. Come on, Jerry O’Connell’s in it… this must be a comedy! Elba can’t keep his mugshot away from hottest Hollywood men or sexiest men alive polls, so it’s no wonder he was cast as Derek. Although Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson with a stalker sounds a lot more promising in retrospect. Ali Larter of Heroes cuts in as the drop dead sexy Lisa, but her advances on Derek are so overblown and ridiculous that it just adds up to a series of awkward moments. Beyonce Knowles does a J-Lo as Derek’s ex-assistant and wife Sharon. She’s just as obsessed about her “all-of-that” man as Lisa and is on the verge of issuing curfews and suspending pocket money. The whole shebang is a dud firecracker… it has all the familiar office interludes, but it’s all been done better and more seriously before. The clean-cut office set is like something from Boston Legal on a bad day, and it has elements that are reminiscent of Perfect Stranger with Halle Berry… except Obsessed is even more superficial.

The audience is introduced to the black “Brangelina” couple, who have just moved into a new home. Derek and Sharon are deeply in love, and they’re living the American dream. It’s like nothing can shatter their perfect lives… nothing except an anonymous blonde bombshell from the office elevator, who is both a temp(tress) and femme fatale wannabe. Her sultry looks and professional whore image is fitting as she tries to get into Derek’s space every few minutes. Her intentions are made clear as she persistently puts Derek into compromising situations. Obsessed is so busy trying to keep a low age rating that it forgot to add some much-needed eroticism and sexuality. The glancing close ups of Ali Larter’s legs are a pathetic excuse for a Basic Instinct rev and are as sexy as a 45 minute pole dancing routine from George W. The movie aches for suspense, intrigue and sex appeal, yet comes across as a hollow, predictable and formulaic trip into the arena of inter-office dating.

If only the producers had seen the true genre coming through and turned Obsessed into a spoof. There’s so much comedy potential for this straight-laced thriller. Sex sells and Obsessed is another case of a movie trailer taunting the audience by dangling its best bits in the air and then not delivering. Unfortunately, there just isn’t enough raw animal energy or convincing characters to really rope the viewer into believing this over-the-top dry romp. The story is well-worn, the characters can’t help but play into stereotypes and the sleek style just makes the whole experience even more impersonal. Steve Shill is a quality TV director and his TV influence is probably why Obsessed has B-movie written all over it, despite a recognisable cast. David Loughery wrote the screenplay for Lakeview Terrace, so it’s quite surprising that Obsessed doesn’t absorb more power in meaningful imagery, dialogue and themes. All in all, this is a bottom-of-the-barrel thriller that’s only sexy on paper, dangerous on circuit and thrilling in the comedy department. If you’re looking to amuse yourself with a few unexpected laughs from this B-grade movie, then see if you can watch more than 45 minutes without rolling your eyes.

The bottom line: Obvious.

Splingometer 4 - Obsessed
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