OBSESSED. 2009. DIRECTED BY STEVE SHILL. STARRING BEYONCÉ KNOWLES, IDRIS ELBA, CHRISTINE LAHTI AND ALI LARTER. REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©
There are two kinds of film guaranteed to get me excited and my butt onto a couch. One is the kind where someone new moves into your house/flat/school or college/office or neighbourhood and, for reasons best known to themselves, starts to systematically tear your life to shreds or even just take it over completely. SINGLE WHITE FEMALE is an excellent example of this kind of movie.
The other kind is where a guy sleeps with a chick once- once, mind you- and from that point on she thinks the two of them are an item, no matter how many hints the terrified guy drops to the contrary. PLAY MISTY FOR ME is the original and probably the best of these. FATAL ATTRACTION is no mean effort, either. SWIMFAN is the high school equivalent of these two gems. It may not have won any Oscars, but I could personally watch it till the cows come home. Damn, that guy What’s-His-Face is cute…!
OBSESSED is a film in the second category. It’s not the best film in this genre. I won’t lie to you about that. It lacks the sheer nail-biting fear that all of the above movies have in spades. Still, it’s a topic I find tremendously entertaining so I enjoyed it anyway. I always enjoy watching a guy have to face up to the consequences of his actions after he’s led a crazy woman on by sleeping with her, haha. No, I’m not evil. Probably just been screwed over by one too many blokes, haha again…
This film is slightly different to the others we’ve discussed in one respect. Handsome hotshot business executive Derek Charles, played by Idris Elba, never actually has sex with the pretty blonde temp who’s stalking him. Not for the want of trying on her part.
Lisa Sheridan is a fully paid-up crazy chick who tries all kinds of tricks to get her boss Derek in the sack but he’s one of those rare beasts that seem to be going rapidly out of fashion. Yep, that’s right, folks. He’s a faithful husband. He resists all of the lovely Lisa’s attempts to seduce him, even though there’s no doubt that he’s attracted to her initially. The attraction lessens considerably and then disappears altogether when Derek works out what the viewers already know, that Lisa is quite literally bats**t crazy and will stop at nothing to get her man…
Oh, did I forget to mention that Derek is married to the feisty Sharon, otherwise known as The Bootylicious One, Beyoncé Knowles…? That might be why he’s afraid to cheat. She might write a song about him that presents him in a bad light, haha. Christ Almighty, I don’t blame him for being too chicken to cheat, do you? If I were married to Beyoncé, I’d be afraid too. She looks like she can handle herself, that one. I wouldn’t want to get on her bad side.
Anyway, Derek might be afraid of the loopy Lisa but his ballsy missus Sharon most certainly is not. She rolls up her sleeves, in fact- metaphorically, at least- and tells the crazy lady to ‘bring it on.’ And when Lisa is misguided enough to come into the Charles’s fantastically expensive home while they’re out and con the babysitter into letting her waltz off with their adorable baby boy Kyle, it really is on. There’ll be skin and hair flying before the film is over. You can put money on it…
There’s no sex at all in this somewhat insipid reworking of the stalker theme. Not so much as a single sighting, either, of what I assume is Idris Elba’s delightfully ripped chest and muscular buttocks. Neither does Beyoncé give us a flash of her famously bootylicious derrière. In fact, she’s rather plainly and uninspiringly dressed throughout. There’s not much sign of the fabulous superstar we’ve come to know and love. Even her hair is flatter and limper. I know there’s more to life than looks, but still… I couldn’t help feeling a tad disappointed. Am I shallow? Probably…
The film might be short on sex but it’s full of montages. There’s a happy moving-into-our-beautiful-new-home montage at the start of the film. There’s a look-at-us-having-a-happy-Christmas-aren’t-we-just-the-perfect-family montage somewhere in the middle. My favourite montage is the my-man-cheated-so-I-threw-him-outta-the-house-and-now-Imma-go-to-school-and-be-a-successful-independent-single-mom montage that pops up after Sharon finds out about Lisa. Beyoncé even wears glasses and puts her hair up in this montage to show us how serious she is. You’d have to be CRAZY (IN LOVE…?) to miss it.
AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.
Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based performance poet, novelist, film blogger, sex blogger and short story writer. She has given more than 200 performances of her comedy sex-and-relationship poems in different venues around Dublin, including The Irish Writers’ Centre, The International Bar, Toners’ Pub (Ireland’s Most Literary Pub), the Ha’penny Inn, Le Dernier Paradis at the Trinity Inn and The Strokestown Poetry Festival.
Her articles, short stories and poems have appeared in The Metro-Herald newspaper, Ireland’s Big Issues magazine, The Irish Daily Star, The Irish Daily Sun and The Boyne Berries literary journal. In August 2014, she won the ONE LOVELY BLOG award for her (lovely!) horror film review blog. She is addicted to buying books and has been known to bring home rain-washed tomes she finds on the street and give them a home.
She is the proud possessor of a pair of unfeasibly large bosoms. They have given her- and the people around her- infinite pleasure over the years. She adores the horror genre in all its forms and will swap you anything you like for Hammer Horror or JAWS memorabilia. She would also be a great person to chat to about the differences between the Director’s Cut and the Theatrical Cut of The Wicker Man. You can contact her at:
1) ‘… BY A WOMAN WALKING HER DOG…’
2) A WRITER’S JOURNEY
3) ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA
4) ANOTHER FIFTY REALLY RANDOM HORROR FILM REVIEWS TO DIE FOR…
5) CANCER BALLS
6) CATCH OF THE DAY
7) FIFTY FILTHY-DIRTY SEX-POEMS YOU MUST READ BEFORE I DIE.
8) FIFTY REALLY RANDOM HORROR FILM REVIEWS TO DIE FOR…
9) THE DEVIANTS
10) VISITING DAY