Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Obsessed (2009)

Reviewed By: Billy

I’m sure a lot of our faithful Farmhands will disagree about the decision to include a review of this movie on our site, but the fact is that if we can make room for Swimfan and Color of Night, then certainly this gross-tastic piece of lazy filmmaking deserves a spot on the Farm as well. The nice thing about Obsessed is that it’s exactly what you think it is: an absolutely terrible rehash of Fatal Attraction with an amazingly bizarre cast that includes Beyonce, Ali Larter, Jerry O’Connell, and Scout Taylor-Compton. I mean, come on…did Tower Farm dream up that team, or what?

So, Obsessed opens with the classic “look how great everything is now” credits montage in which young parents Derek and Sharon move into a beautiful new home, only to end up rolling around on the carpet while the classy Beyonce (as Sharon) spouts off dialogue including, “So I guess we’ll have fine carpet tattoos all over our asses” and “I don’t want any 30-second nookie.” This montage is also a master class in time padding, with two full musical selections playing before the credits are even over. And no, unfortunately neither of them involve the word “Bootylicious.”

As soon as the credits end, trouble begins: Ali Larter shows up as the new temp in Derek’s office. We know she’s trouble because in every scene that she’s in – and I mean EVERY SINGLE SCENE – we get that creepy three-note music that I’m pretty sure was composed at some point in the late-80s on a Casio two-octave and has been used in every sex-thriller since. Anyway, aside from the music, Lisa the temp is pretty much a walking red-flag, announcing that “I think you’ll find I’m not your typical temp” and having memorized Derek’s schedule before even working a single day with him. Uh-oh…didn’t Derek ever see Lara Flynn Boyle in The Temp? Everyone knows efficient women are evil!!

Derek’s office co-workers happen to be the most spectacularly clichéd group of characters this side of Dark Castle Films. We’ve got the mincing Patrick, Derek’s gay office assistant who constantly talks about lips gloss and cosmos, and Ben the office womanizer, who’s played by Jerry O’Connell as a bizarre combo of Brandon Walsh-meets-Jerry Maguire. The office Christmas party scene is a classic, led off by the preposterous idea that a company would hold a “no-spouse” holiday party. That’s right: No Spouses Allowed! Are these people just asking for complete marriage instability within the corporate ranks? Anyway, set to the sweet crooning of “Play That Funky Music White Boy” and featuring Jerry O’s incessant mugging for the camera, Lisa the temp suddenly goes full throttle, following Derek into the restroom and actually attempting to seduce him while he’s still peeing in the urinal! And you thought her efficiency was confined to the coffee maker!

After being cruelly rejected next to a crusty urinal cake, Lisa climbs into Derek’s car and pops open her trench coat in a hilarious scene that looks like it came from a “Mad TV” parody of Basic Instinct. Ali Larter awkwardly caresses her body and appears completely drunk, while Derek (in a brilliantly hammy performance by Idris Elba of "The Wire") starts barking like a pitbull and tosses the girl out of the car.

From here on out, the screenwriters reach into their bag of sex-thriller tricks and pull out some real classics: Lisa the temp sends Derek the expected e-mail spam (her screen-name is…ready for this?…TEMPGIRL!), shows up unannounced at work functions, and even date rapes the guy by slipping him a roofie and breaking into his hotel room! Don’t worry, I’m still trying to figure that one out, too. And Lisa’s apparently an expert-lock-picker, because she breaks into his room again the next night and OD’s on pills while naked in his bed. This, of course, causes things to spiral out of control even faster: Derek almost loses his job, his wife, and worst of all, the audience is subjected to Christine Lahti as the investigating detective, a performance that could be a botched audition for her own "Law & Order" spinoff.

Finally, an hour and fifteen minutes in, Scout Taylor-Compton shows up basically playing Laurie Strode again, who apparently wandered out of Haddonfield and ended up in this generic city babysitting for Beyonce. This raised my hopes that Michael Myers might pop up, too, but all we get instead is Ali Larter taking a few cues from Rebecca De Mornay, showing up at the house and creepily rocking the baby. This little bit of breaking and entering, by the way, prompts the following response from ace detective Lahti: “You better beef up your security system.”

Of course, everyone knows from the trailer (which was as overplayed as that “Single Ladies” song) that the entire movie is actually nothing more than lame buildup to the final catfight between Ali and Beyonce, giving the latter the chance to growl dialogue like, “You think you’re crazy? I’ll show you crazy. Just try me, b*tch!” The fight scene has to be seen to be believed; I haven’t seen fight choreography this clumsy since I was an active part of the Muncie Civic Theatre. I’m a big fan of the over-exaggerated sound effects, such as when Ali kicks Beyonce with bare feet and the sound comes off more like a steel-toed boot on concrete. Beyonce, for her part, goes after Ali with an evil smile and the quick moves of a well-trained assassin, which of course make perfect sense for her housewife character. Finally, after a few minutes of what is one of the most unevenly matched fights in recent history (I mean, come on…Ali’s barefoot and half-naked and Beyonce’s got on stiletto boots and mom jeans…), Lisa the temp ends up impaled with a chandelier and we get a final freeze frame on Beyonce’s face, as one of her own songs (called – I kid you not – “Smash Into You”) takes us to the credits.

Wow. Is this movie even for real? Maybe I dreamt up everything I just wrote. Could Hollywood in 2009 be this stupid? Could someone have really thought that a PG-13 version of Fatal Attraction without any sex or murders would be a good idea? Don’t even get me started on the gay guy, who is without a doubt the most vile, stereotypical gay character I’ve seen in a movie this decade. Even more pissed-off should be temps everywhere, who are once again portrayed as unbalanced and delusional women who can only fulfill themselves by seducing the boss. Come on, temps – it’s time to stand up for your rights and not take it anymore! Let’s start a temp-revolt around the world…and commence by giving this movie…



  1. R U kidding me?! This movie was AWESOME!!! You know...in a drunken-Friday-night sort of way! HAHA! Hilarious review--as always!!!

    BTW...the "No Spouses Allowed" corporate party isn't just some preposterous movie idea...that actually does go on in real life. My sister's husband's company held parties like that...they're now divorced!

  2. God I hate gay characters in movies, shove a bear in there - then see what the critics say.

    (I can see it now, "a standout performance from...")

    This movie sounds bloody terrible by the way.

  3. LOL man this movie looks lame. Thanks for the certified seal!

  4. As if the recent rash of PG-13 horror movies was bad enough, and PG-13 sex comedies ("Fired Up"), now we've got to put up with PG-13 erotic thrillers?


  5. My Godzilla movie ended early when the wife was watching this, so I caught the final 5m, and it solidified the fact that it was everything I thought it would be and less. I cant believe this is even on TFs, good for you guys for being the only ones daring enough to watch this shit lol..

  6. Ohhh, how I've considered braving this one for probably the same reasons TF did...because I wanted to revel in how trashy, unoriginal, and stupid it was. I think you took the bullet for me, so I don't have to shoot myself in the face with this one. So...uhh..thanks! :P

  7. One of you two HAS to watch the film "Slaughter" from the 8 Films to Die For/After Dark Horrorfest, it sounds terrible. You're gonna hate it.......watch it ASAP.

  8. I saw this one a while ago and just found the whole thing hilarious. It's like cliche after cliche after cliche without it meaning anything at all at the end. Why do a Fatal Attraction remake without the sex or the husband ACTUALLY being seduced? And that catfight was so ridiculous that Vince McMahon will probably invite both Beyonce and Ali Larter to settle the score at the next Wrestlemania. Definitely a horrible film but at least it's entertaining.

  9. Fred,
    EXACTLY...what's the point if the husband doesn't cheat? It makes no sense!

  10. Great review! This was hilariously bad and predictable. Idris Elba couldn't save it.