6.12.2016

Addicted (2014) - A Review


I think I first saw this movie on Netflix and I avoided, probably because I was being bougie.  Like, I think the reason POC struggle to support our independent media is the quality of said media.  I mean, in the age of blu-ray and hi-def and 3D, it's haaaaard to sit through a project that was obviously made on a budget of zero.

So I ignored it on Netflix, and then I saw it on Hulu where I ignored it again.  But then I was reading about my one of my favorite actresses, Kat Graham, and learned she was in this film.  So I read up on it and figured I might as well take a gander.



This trailer is somewhat misleading, as is the poster above it.

Addicted is not about a woman simply having an affair with another man; it's about a woman battling sex addiction and sleeping with multiple men.  Everywhere.  In an artist's studio, on the hood of a car, in a swinger's/fetish club, in a corner of a regular club - everywhere.  Even her fantasies take 3D form, causing her practically have sex with herself on her desk at work.

That all said, I don't think this film deserved an 8% rating on Rotten Tomatoes; if anything, I think a lot of its critical woes stem from discrimination against POC in the film industry.

Sharon Leal
Think about it; why are Sharon Leal, Boris Kodjoe, Tyson Beckford, William Levy, and Kat Graham doing films like this?  They're hot.  They're talented; I estimate Sharon Leal was about 41 when she filmed this, and yet she looked like a 30-year-old (or even a 27-year-old) as she hopped into one smoldering sex scene after the other (there's a lot of sex in this film).

Was the quality top notch?  No, but this is an indie film; it was made on a budget of $5 million which, in Hollywood, is basically a chump change budget of prayers and favors.  Even so, it raked in $17.5 million at the box office (yes, it made it to the box office).  So one could argue it made back three times what was spent.  In this instance, I'd call that a win.

Was the story particularly stellar?  Not really, but then again, the screenplay's based on a novel by Zane, not a play by Zora Neale Hurston, sooooo...we can't expect too much in that department.  Also, people keep forgetting that the more layers to a film - additional actors, special effects, action sequences - the higher the budget.  Ergo, it makes sense that if the money (and the schedule) is tight, you want to go with a simpler storyline.

All things considered, we do get to see a Blasian actress (that would be Leal) in a lead role.  She's a successful career woman, a wife to a good-looking husband, and a mother of two.  We get to see her family in all of its middle class glory.  We also see she has a caring mother who helps with her kids, and Emayatzy Corinealdi (Akira's Hip Hop Shop, Middle of Nowhere) as her assistant at work.

William Levy
We also get to see steamy love scenes between Cuban-American model/actor William Levy and Sharon Leal, and later Kat Graham.  Sure, William Levy seems like a generic, standard-issue White dude...until he opens his mouth.  And in an age when Black women keep clamoring for more diverse love interests than simply Fitz or Jake White guys, the casting of William Levy is a breath of fresh air.

When Zoe (again Leal) realizes that her affair with Quinton (Levy), and her subsequent trysts with Corey (Tyson Beckford) really is going to destroy her personal and professional life, she starts seeing Dr. Spencer (Tasha Smith in a questionable wig).  All right, all right...so we get yet another professional sistah in the film.  I'm down with that.  I'm also down with the format of the film; Zoe's therapy sessions act as a narrative framing device.  The whole reason she goes to see Dr. Spencer at the beginning of the film is to begin her sordid tale of sex addiction.

Was the portrayal of sex addiction accurate?  Well, no...but then again, Zane is not a psychologist.  And the media industry - unfortunately - likes to glamorize addiction, much like it glamorizes rape.  In fact, I think erotic authors ought to stay away from sex addition (and rape) altogether.  Neither is sexy, healthy, or scintillating.  One is a disorder and the other is a violation.  Had I been the one adapting this for the screen, I would've simply focused on promiscuity and infidelity.

Kat Graham
Like Quinton and his quirky pixie Diamond (Kat Graham).  That was some Olympic-level jackrabbit sex for a minute there, I tell you.  She even had the whole erotic asphyxiation thing going. And when Zoe walked in on them, Diamond was all perky and chipper, talmabout, "Do you want to join us?"

I laughed out loud when I saw that ish.

It's a shame Diamond's screen time was so minimal; I would've liked it if we explored who she was a bit more.  Kat Graham looked very cute in this room, and it's not often we get to see outside of her Bonnie Bennett role, and Diamond struck me as a fun, sexy, provocative role for someone who's been repeatedly barred from having her own love scenes on TVD.

Back to the movie overall.  Was the soundtrack decent?  Yes, actually!  Nice, simplistic score; the actual songs were well chosen (except for the one playing during the end credits...seemed out of place).  Combined with well-chosen directorial cuts, the soundtrack added that last bit of polish to the film.

Final verdict?  I'm torn.  Part of me wants to give it 3 out of 5 stars, considering the obstacles it had to overcome.  But another part is thinking 2.5 because the acting sometimes?  Meh.

6 comments:

  1. Though I'm not a big reader on romance novels like " Addicted " , I knew who Zane was because of my sister reading her stuff. I was under the impression that Zane was going to have a hit movie on her because of the raciness of her novel and I thoughts that Addicted would out do 50 Shades Of Grey..NOT !!

    I got to see Addicted and I must say ..I was highly disappointed with it. I admit.. along with Zane being a racy writer,she had the right characters that would reel in their audience but somehow..it didn't quite come out that way. As romantic as everybody looked in the movie ..the end result of it was that the romance seem unromantic. I was expecting more..especially from Zane.

    I could be wrong but I thought that Zane kind of did a rush job with Addicted.She just thought that her audience would get interested in the movie because her readers thought that art imitated life. I guess she thought that. maybe the movie would be as good as her book. I can't say because I never read Ber work but my sister said that she screwed up.

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    1. And yet this is apparently her most famous novel.

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    2. That's the bad part. Which such a good novel...I was expecting more from the movie
      Maybe it could have been her or the director.. idk but the movie seemed rushed and parts have been taken out from the book.

      Unfortunately , in the case with Addicted..good novels doesn't always mean a good movie.

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  2. I read addicted back in the day and was NOT impressed. So not surprised the movie falls short. Shame, because the casting is solid.

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  3. I read addicted back in the day and was NOT impressed. So not surprised the movie falls short. Shame, because the casting is solid.

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  4. Thanks for the review of this. I was curious about this one too until I found out it was by Zane. Have to be honest... her writing makes me shudder in disgust lol I will be checking out the soundtrack though. That sounds like it's worth it.

    Btw, though, have you checked out some of the recent movies coming out? Though the casting has its issues in the first and last movies I'll list, I've heard "God Particle," "Hidden Figures," and "The Girl with all the Gifts" are still looking and sounding pretty promising, all things considered.

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