Obsession (1949)

Starring: Robert Newton and Sally Gray
Fabulous Films/Fremantle Home Entertainment
RRP: 14.99

FHED 1818
Certificate: PG
Available 20 September 2004

Clive Riordan, a London psychiatrist, becomes thoroughly fed up with the endless stream of lovers his wife, Storm, seems to enjoy. He plans revenge against her latest conquest, Bill Kronin, after he catches them in the act. As far as Storm and the rest of the world are concerned Bill has simply disappeared but there's far more to this than would at first appear...

At its core Obsession is a simple tale of revenge. But, one with an almost Hitchcock-like quality to it. It's not an overly complicated plot: Man jealous of wife, man catches wife with new lover, man attempts to kill new lover and get away with it. But, it is the suspense that is the real killer here. Will he get away with it? Will the police discover what is going on before the murder can take place?

This is also a tale of murder with a twist. Riordan's method of murder is cunning and calculated. He has already started to plot against his victim, even before he has met him. Fed up with his wife's cheating ways, Riordan plans the perfect crime months, maybe even years, in advance - leaving nothing to chance.

While the picture quality on this release is superior to VHS copies, it wouldn't have done any harm if the film print had been cleaned a little before its transference to DVD There are plenty of hairs and minor imperfections on the film stock. There are are also no real extras on this DVD apart from brief biographies for the main cast and crew - but then, to be honest, the film is enough.

If you fancy seeing how a real chiller should be made then Obsession is worth a look.

Ray Thompson

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