April 24, 2009, - 7:43 pm
By Debbie Schlussel
I’d planned to post my brief review of Beyonce Knowles’ “Obsessed” as an update to my reviews of this weekend’s other new releases. But after seeing it, I think this movie should get its own post. And not because it’s good. But because it’s racist. Blatantly so.
It’s not bad . . . for a Lifetime movie of the week, produced by BET. (There was absolutely no suspense and it’s a poor, cheap copy of the far superior classic, “Fatal Attraction.”)
But it’s also racist in a way that would be unacceptable, today, the era of Obama and the Post-“Mandingo” movie age, were the races in this movie reversed. You’ve heard of “Blaxploitation.” Now, check out the new racist trend out of Hollywood: White-sploitation.
In this movie executive produced by Beyonce Knowles, her father/manager, Matthew Knowles, and Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Beyonce plays the Black wife of a Black investment executive. Her husband is relentlessly pursued and stalked by a hot, White (and crazy) blonde temp (Ali Larter). Although the husband never gives in to the White chick’s pursuits, she frames him up to make it look as if he did, and he’s in the doghouse with his wife.
And the Black couple is surrounded by a cadre of brainless and otherwise non-ideal human beings with gaping flaws. There is the lecherous, married White male co-worker (Jerry O’Connell) who can’t believe the Black executive won’t accept a little something on the side with the hot blonde–something he (the White guy) says he wants to do with her. Then, there is the world’s most brainless White baby sitter, who gullibly lets the stalker White chick into the house to kidnap the baby. And don’t forget the world’s most brainless gay White male secretary, who ditzily gives the stalker White blonde the complete scoop on the Black couples’ weekend plans, making it easier for her to stalk them. Even the White chick cop (Christine Lahti) isn’t too bright. Yup, not a single White character in the movie who is sympathetic.
Sure, race is never mentioned in the movie. It doesn’t have to be. Look at the movie poster and the colors they chose for the design, and the way the characters are juxtaposed. It’s all about Black versus White, baby. I live in a mostly Black suburb of Detroit, and I saw the movie in a local theater with an entirely Black audience. I heard all assortment of racist comments about the White people and the White chick stalker, throughout the movie and afterward as I left. No wonder this obvious race-baiting film wasn’t screened for critics.
It plays on the worst fears of many Black women in America, who fear that White women are stealing their men–even though less than 5% of Black men are married to White women, according to the Janks Morton documentary, “What Black Men Think.” And of those 5%, I doubt most of the women were merciless stalkers as in this movie. Movies like this breed and feed on racism, particularly against White women. This kind of pop culture influence on the Black community is of no benefit and serves no purpose other than confirmation of baseless anger and racial hatred. I can’t tell you how many times In my own neighborhood stores, I’ve been called racial epithets, like “bony-assed White bitch,” for no reason whatsoever other than my skin tone.
I wondered how the audience would like it if the movie was about a Black male stalker was terrorizing a White couple, and all of the other Black characters in the movie were vapid, morons, or both. And why Hollywood can make a film like this, yet it’s justifiably no longer permissible to make a movie in which the races are reversed.
Well, actually, I know why. We’ve long advanced past the era of “Mandingo,” but we’ve regressed “forward” into the era of . . . “Blondingo,” courtesy of Hollywood’s newest producers (and race-baiters), Beyonce and her daddy.
The movie is mildly entertaining, but would it have killed them to include a single sympathetic White character in the entire movie? Are we all that bad and/or stupid?
I guess Beyonce, her father, and Magic Johnson have forgotten the race of most of those who’ve made them rich beyond their wildest dreams and beyond the wealth of most Americans, Black OR White:
Blondingos like me.
(From the Debbie Schlussel Hollywood Zombie Card Collection)