From the Editor

Movie Review Archive

Thank you for checking out my movie review archive. I'm in the process of transitioning to something else, so I will no longer post new reviews to this blog. In the meantime, I will keep these reviews archived; these are from the fall of 2008 to April 2011. Please watch this blog for more info and keep in touch (you can still find me on Facebook and Twitter). Here's to more great movies!

Wes Singleton

North Texas Film Critics Association

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Obsessed - D+

Rated PG-13 for sexual material including some suggestive dialogue, some violence and thematic content, 105 minutes

"Fatal Attraction" rip-off "Obsessed" is a forgettable, cliched thriller

The new thriller "Obsessed" certainly is obsessed with one thing: ripping off "Fatal Attraction" or any other crazed psychopath vixen. In spite of a handsome cast that includes music star Beyonce and a few entertaining, over-the-top moments near the end, "Obsessed" is strictly forgettable: a paint-by-numbers, cliche-laden, badly acted and written thriller that you shouldn't waste your time or money with until it hits the discount theaters or DVD.

Derek (Idris Elba) and Sharon (Beyonce) are a happily-married couple with a young son, a huge house in the suburbs and Derek's career at his firm is on the rise. Their idllyic life comes to an end when Lisa the temp ("Heroes" Ali Larter) begins working for Derek's firm. Derek is a nice guy, but Lisa misunderstands his behavior and begins flirting with Derek, then coming on to him at the company Christmas, then in his car and other attempts. Derek resists her advances, but the delusional Lisa believes they're involved, leading to disasterous and dangerous results, particularly when Lisa and Sharon have a showdown that will leave only one standing.

"Obsessed" is a third-rate thriller that throws out every movie cliche regarding these types of things (red dress, tainted drinks, et al) and is truly painful to watch. Believability is thrown out the window and you won't buy a single minute of this, though the cast is pretty to look at. All of the characters are strictly cardboard cut out with no depth, motivation or backstory. The lame direction by TV director Steve Shill and the dervivative script by "Lakeview Terrace's" David Loughery don't help, either.

As for Beyonce, who also co-produced (along with Magic Johnson), she looks good and may be able to carry a tune, but may want to sharpen those acting skills; she comes across too wooden and stilted to believe. Larter proves she can handle herself on the TV show "Heroes" but not here, and Elba (seen currently to better effect in "The Office") is altogether wasted in a one-note role. Watch for Jerry O' Connell, character actor Bruce McGill and even Christine Lahti (yes that Christine Lahti, of "Chicago Hope") in small roles that considerably underuse their talents.

The main reason that most will want to "Obsessed" is the girl fight at the end that is the most entertaining, though over-the-top moment in the film. The climax is even extremely predictable, you'll know who'll kick who and who will die at the end. At least the R&B, urban soundtack is nice to listen to, and Beyonce sings a new song on it, appropriately called "Smash into You" (if you see the film you'll know why it's appropriate).

It's hard for me to diss someone as hugely talented as Beyonce, but "Obsessed" is a forgettable drama that's beneath her talents. You're better off listening to her music, it's far more memorable and worthwhile than this trashy mess of a movie.