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Derek Charles, a successful asset manager who has just received a huge promotion, is blissfully happy in his career and in his marriage to the beautiful Beth. But when Lisa, a temp worker, starts stalking Derek, everything he's worked so hard for, are placed in jeopardy.
For more about Obsessed and the Obsessed Blu-ray release, see Obsessed Blu-ray Review published by Martin Liebman on July 27, 2009 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.0 out of 5.
Starring: Idris Elba, Beyoncé Knowles, Ali Larter, Jerry O'Connell
» See full cast & crew
Obsessed Blu-ray Review
Only a boiled rabbit away from perfection. OK, not really.
Reviewed by Martin Liebman, July 27, 2009
I think you'll find I'm not your typical temp.
At least Fatal Attraction had the sense to come up with a catchy title that's memorable because it sounds different and dangerous. 2009's Obsessed just sounds like a movie that's not exactly going to set the world on fire, and in that regard it never lets its audience down. Like its title, Obsessed just screams "bland" in every facet of its existence. Serving up a script that fizzles from the get-go, a generic soundtrack, uninspired acting, boring sets, but fair production values and decent direction, Obsessed still managed to make the studio millions during its theatrical run, raking in well over three times its budget. Still, even the spit-and-polish of its attractive veneer and considerable clout as a proven moneymaker cannot hide the many shortcomings that make Obsessed the sort of movie that will quickly (and none too soon) fade into oblivion.
The Charles' -- Derek (Idris Elba) and Sharon (Beyoncé Knowles) -- seem to live the perfect life. They've just settled into a new luxury home, have an infant son, and Derek's a big shot at his L.A.-based financial firm. It seems like nothing could spoil the magic until a new temp shows up in the office. Lisa (Ali Larter) finds herself instantly attracted to Derek and in but a few short days, she's managed to wiggle herself into a position where the two must work closely together. Though clearly bothered by her subtle and, occasionally, not-so-subtle advances, Derek shrugs her off until she pushes the issue at a "no spouses allowed" office Christmas party. Derek angrily rejects her seduction but Lisa can't clue into the fact that he's not interested. Derek must fend off an admirer who becomes more obsessed as time goes on, a girl who seems to believe with all her heart that she and Derek are meant to be together, a conviction she's prepared to prove correct -- at any cost.
Obsessed is an Erotic Thriller without anything even remotely "erotic" about it. A play-it-safe PG-13 paint-by-numbers picture, Obsessed plays out with a predictability that would make even the ongoing Coyote/RoadRunner feud jealous. There's not a shred of an element of surprise here; every action and reaction are telegraphed reels away. Sure, the primary plot's no surprise. That's OK; audience need to have an idea as to what they're getting themselves into. There's a big difference, however, in understanding the overreaching plot and the nuances that make it both whole and unique. Fatal Attraction had the market cornered in that regard, but Obsessed seems to have glossed over the fact that there need be something more to a movie than its basic structure to win over audiences. Even some of the plot devices that move the story along will have the audience groaning. A "no spouses" office party? The "oops I forgot to set the alarm after all we've been through?" routine? None of it makes a lick of sense, and it all starts with perhaps the most important element in a movie like this: character motivation.
Obsessed offers no rhyme or reason for Lisa's "obsession" with Derek. Is she infatuated with his looks (and why wasn't the movie instead called Infatuated)? Is she enthralled by his wealth (and why wasn't the movie instead called Enthralled)? Is she transfixed by his stature as a powerful businessman (and why wasn't the movie called Transfixed)? It's clear that Lisa is crazy, but what made her snap, why did she choose to stalk Derek, and what keeps her going through to the end? It doesn't really matter. Obsessed seems to exist only to revel in its finale, a conclusion that doesn't live up to even the measly expectations that accompany its inevitable arrival. Perhaps the film's most impressive feat stems from the fact that the filmmakers were actually able to drag this one out to a nearly two hour (!) runtime; this sort of copycat, lame-o picture generally runs a good 85 minutes, ensuring that it doesn't overstay an already perilous welcome. No, Obsessed just drags on, even the aforementioned climax playing out for far too long and, adding insult to injury, without a spark of real emotion to lend it the weight needed to keep it from ending up in the "laughably bad" territory where it unceremoniously resides.
Obsessed Blu-ray, Video Quality
Obsessed seduces viewers with a strong 1080p Blu-ray transfer framed in its original 2.39:1 aspect ratio. The image sports solid depth and top-notch detail across the entire field-of-view. Several overhead cityscape shots, for instance, showcase extraordinary detail in faraway objects, particularly in buildings and roadways. Detail also impresses in more standard shots, too. The transfer allows the beautiful interior of the Charles' home -- the hardwood floors and other wooden accents in particular -- to stand out nicely. The image does take on a rather warm appearance in such scenes, and flesh tones often follow suit by exhibiting a slightly red push. By contrast, the office scenes take on a cold, steely gray and blue appearance, the contrast between the two primary locations clear in thematic intent. The one downside is that, on occasion, the image goes a bit soft, several scenes bordering on distracting. Blacks also look deep and dark but occasionally drown out fine details. Nevertheless, the transfer serves up a blemish-free print and a subtle layer of grain that offers a nicely-done cinematic appearance. Thought not a particularly great movie, Obsessed does look rather good on Blu-ray.
Obsessed Blu-ray, Audio Quality
Obsessed makes its intentions known via a standard but nevertheless effective Dolby TrueHD 5.1 lossless soundtrack. Obsessed is a straightforward, dialogue-driven picture with minimal opportunity to truly test a home theater set-up. However, it does deliver what's required of it admirably. The track features several popular songs, each offering up a crystal-clear reproduction in both the instrumental accompaniments and the lyrics. They also feature a nice low end that rounds out several fine listens throughout. There are a few instances where the track delivers a rather impressive, albeit very minor, environmental atmosphere; an establishing nighttime shot of the Charles' home is accompanied by the sound of crickets in the background, and a few small audible details in the office scenes create a mostly realistic aural environment. The rear speakers serve up the occasional discrete effect, perhaps most notably during the climax. Otherwise, this one's rather straightforward; dialogue reproduction makes for the track's strong suit and primary ingredient. Though not a track meant to sell sound systems, Obsessed's lossless soundtrack accomplishes all that is is required of it.
Obsessed Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Even the special features for Obsessed are highlighted by a piece on the film's climactic scene rather than anything more substantive because, well, there's really nothing of substance to focus on. Playing Nicely Together (1080p, 15:37) is a bland "making-of" piece that explores the film's origins, the script, the themes, the performances, the lack of character motivation, and more. Girl Fight! (1080p, 11:13) looks at the process of bring the film's climax to the big screen. Obsessed: Dressed to Kill (1080p, 9:30) examines the elegant sets and costumes that populate the film. Also included on this disc is BD-Live (Blu-ray profile 2.0) functionality and 1080p trailers for Not Easily Broken, Cadillac Records, The Da Vinci Code, Lakeview Terrace, The Pursuit of Happyness, Stomp the Yard, First Sunday, and Seven Pounds. Disc two of this set contains a digital copy of Obsessed that was unavailable for download and perusal at time of writing.
Obsessed Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Obsessed does enough to differ from Fatal Attraction to keep from being a straight rip-off, but there's no denying the similarities. While the story here isn't a bad one, Obsessed misses all the smaller details that would have made it a passable genre picture and a decent companion piece to the Oscar-nominated Fatal Attraction. Also hindered by lackadaisical acting, Obsessed seems doomed to be an ignorable picture even by those who are consumed by cinema. Sony's Blu-ray release delivers a high quality technical presentation. Sporting a handsome 1080p transfer and a fine lossless soundtrack, the disc is hindered only by the lack of extras and, well, the movie. Worth a rental for Beyoncé fans.
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Obsessed Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Obsessed Announced for Blu-ray - June 8, 2009
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has announced that it will bring the thriller 'Obsessed', starring Beyoncé Knowles ('Cadillac Records') to Blu-ray on August 4, day-and-date with the DVD. Video will be presented in 2.40:1 1080p AVC, accompanied by a 5.1 Dolby TrueHD ...
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