Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Girl Gone Wild

I was expecting Obsessed to be something that had dredged itself up from the lowest point of Hell's Ninth Circle and splashed its unholy slimy self all over this planet's movie screens. Instead, what I got was something at least a few levels above that, maybe as high up as the Fifth Circle (this is supposedly where the slothful end up so that really makes no sense but let's just go with it).

Obsessed is yet another one of those DA BITCH BE KRAZY movies in which a woman who appears perfectly normal makes sexual advances on some poor, innocent man. The advances are rebuffed (if not at first then eventually) and that's when you find out that DA BITCH BE KRAZY and she does things like vandalize property, kill house pets, and eventually provoke a violent confrontation in which DA KRAZY BITCH (DKB) is finally put down.

In the case, said bitch is played by Ali Larter. She's perfect for this role because DKB is always smoking hot. DKB is also always supremely competent at anything she happens to be doing that doesn't involve her love life, an aspect when Ali Larter's Lisa (DKB) is hired as a temp to fill for an executive assistant who is out sick. Her boss, Derek (Idris Elba)*, quickly concludes that she is better at the job after one day than his regular assistant is. She's also extremely friendly and always makes a point of adjusting her skirt when Derek is watching. Resisting this sexy temp isn't really too much of a problem for Derek though since his wife, Sharon, strongly resembles Beyonce Knowles which is probably why they cast Beyonce Knowles to play her.

That pretty much sums up the movie's first act. Derek is a good man who is faithful to his wife. Lisa is a beautiful woman who is clearly attracted to Derek yet is also presented as someone intelligent and mature enough to recognize that he is in love with his wife and not at all responsive to her subtle flirtations. Her proper response would be to give up and look for love somewhere else but she can't do this because...yeah, you got it...DA BITCH BE KRAZY. The first bit of insanity comes at the office Christmas party when she attempts a very aggressive seduction in the office men's room. She gets into his car later, at first trying to apologize before she opens her coat to reveal that she's in her underwear. It escalates from there in terms of madness on Lisa's part and the intensity of her threats against Derek.

There are two things that, for me, elevate this movie slightly above the level of unwatchable crap. One is a realistic plot point in which Derek's male coworkers think it's funny that the biggest problem in his life is that a gorgeous woman's biggest goal in life is to wrap her lips around his penis and his frustration when he encounters that attitude. The other in a very cool line Beyonce delivers toward the end when she finds Lisa in her house. I won't reveal it here but when I heard it I thought, "Oh THAT'S why Beyonce agreed to be in this movie. So she could say that line."

All in all, though, it's the same DBBK misogynistic plot you've seen dozens of times since Fatal Attraction came out in which the greatest threat a man can face is a beautiful, intelligent woman. At least in this case, Derek had an even more beautiful and intelligent woman. Remember men, this could happen to you.

*I was going to describe Derek's job here but I honestly can't remember what the hell it is he does. It's one of those generic movie jobs where guy in suits sit around in an office discussing accounts. Could be advertising, could be finance, hell it could they publish neo-Nazi pamphlets. I really can't say.

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