out of Five
Running time: 105
Enjoyably rubbish thriller enlivened by strong performances and a decent climax that just about compensates for the film's failures in pacing and plotting.
What's it all about?
Directed by Steve Shill, Obsessed stars Idris Elba as Derek Charles, a high-flying businessman who seems to have it all: a recent promotion, a new house, the perfect wife (Beyonce Knowles as Sharon) and an impossibly cute baby. However, his life turns upside down when gorgeous new office temp Lisa (Ali Larter) starts coming onto him and won't take no for an answer.
Unfortunately, with each refusal, Lisa becomes more and more obsessed and it isn't long before she's entered Fatal Attraction-style psycho territory.
Ali Larter gives possibly her best performance to date as the deranged Lisa, managing to suggest a hint of damaged vulnerability rather than just playing her as a straight-up evil bitch. Similarly, Idris Elba makes an extremely likeable lead, whilst Beyonce is largely wasted for most of the film but makes up for it in the climax.
The film makes you wait an awfully long time for the inevitable catfight between Larter and Beyonce (given away by the trailer), but when it finally comes, it doesn't disappoint and just about makes up for the film's dodgier moments. The climax is well-staged, with plenty of crowd-pleasing moments, though you do wonder how they sneaked that head-butt past the 12A certificate.
It's fair to say that Obsessed has more than its fair share of rubbish moments, some of which are unintentionally hilarious (Lisa sending Derek a huge blue emoticon; her spectacularly ill-judged car seduction attempt), while others are just plain frustrating (a drug-assisted rape scene that is instantly forgotten about; Christine Lahti's embarrassing role as the world's most useless detective). In addition, the film is painfully slow in places and takes ages to get going, while also lacking the guts to really stick the knife in.
In short, the performances ensure that Obsessed is never less than watchable and it's ultimately worth seeing for the climactic catfight.