Blindfold: Acts of Obsession (1994)

Own it!

review by Scott Hamilton and Chris Holland
See also:

Ultimate Desires

Showgirl Murders

The Temp

Blindfold: Acts of Obsession

Lava Lamp

Our rating: one LAVA® motion lamps.

Blindfold: Acts of Obsession

Probably the only reason that anyone would pick up Blindfold: Acts of Obsession is because they had heard that Shannen "Brenda from Beverly Hills 90210" Doherty gets naked in this film. That is true. Very true. True every few minutes, or so it seems. They should have given her breasts separate billing, they appear so often. And the weird thing is that they rarely appear at the same time as Shannen's face, almost as if they are separate characters. (Despite that fact, we don't think Shannen used a body double). It's almost enough that you won't notice that Shannen's eyes are crooked.

Doherty plays Madeleine Dalton, a woman who is drawn to bad boys -- or least she was. Now she's married to the rather boring Mike Dalton (Michael Woods), who's some sort of real estate broker with a Glengarry Glen Ross kind of thing going on. It shouldn't be all that surprising that he has trouble getting it up in bed.

Under the advice of her creepy psychiatrist Dr. Jennings (Judd Nelson), Madeleine decides to spice up her sex life with Mike by playing games. For the benefit of our younger readers, let's just pretend that the games they play are Parcheesi, Chinese Checkers, and Candy Land. Oh, and Snakes and Ladders. But these games create only momentary marital bliss.

Blindfold: Acts of Obsession
His Gen-X credentials: The Breakfast Club.
Her Gen-X credentials: Heathers.

Meanwhile, in a what seems like a totally unrelated plot, women around Santa Monica are being blindfolded, handcuffed, and then knifed to death. Because this is a bad movie, the police take only a cursory interest in solving the murders. Take, for instance, the scene where the police respond to a report that a blindfolded, handcuffed woman was seen being dragged into a building. The first cop who responds actually brags to his superior that he "took a quick look around" and found the building "clean." So who will actually make the half-hearted attempt required to find the body that almost certainly has to be there? Why, androgynously named Chris Madigan (Kristian Alfonso), who also happens to be Madeleine's sister. She finds the body of course, after an excruciating long and pointless "looking around the basement" scene.

It turns out that Dr. Jennings has some sort of connection to a presumed dead killer with an identical modus operandi. The police files on the previous killer's case are constantly described as being "vague," mainly because they would have to be for the plot to work. But when the killer is revealed at the end, you can't wonder what police department on the face of the Earth would put together a file on a psychopathic multiple murderer and not include a single picture of him!

Blindfold: Acts of Obsession

Much of the fault for this movie's failure should be laid on Shannen's shoulders. As the plot progresses, Madeleine is supposed to become more and more obsessed with the games she plays (for you kids, she's playing Sorry!) -- so obsessed that she can't tell the difference between pain and pleasure, blah blah blah. Shannen has to make us believe that's she's obsessed, but she doesn't even come close. As a matter of fact, Doherty seems pretty bored with everything that's going on. It's as if she told the director, "Hey, you got my breasts on camera! You don't need me to act too!"

Not all of the film's problems lie with its well-endowed leading lady, however. Somewhere along the line, Judd Nelson convinced Hollywood that he could act, because he keeps popping up on screen. In this vehicle, though, Nelson slaughters his lines neatly and efficiently, boring us within seconds of his appearance. Alfonso, bless her heart, is trying her best, but it's just not enough. She's a long way from MacGyver in this made-for-cable stinker. Her worst moment is when she faces off the obviously psychotic killer. She has a gun and he doesn't -- and as with so many other bad movies, she inexplicably doesn't shoot him.


One could wonder why Doherty would make a movie like this. It was obviously doomed from the start. Shannen obviously couldn't or didn't put the effort into the role that was needed. The role isn't exactly great, especially considering she doesn't do anything but scream and stumble around during the film's climax. Plus, there are rather obvious script and editing problems, like the rather clumsy explanation for why all the main characters show up at the same place at the same time. A more worthy thing to explain would be why anyone would want to watch this movie.

Review date: 11/29/1998

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As demonstrated by these photos:

Blindfold: Acts of Obsession
Blindfold: Acts of Obsession

We are not saying that Shannen is unattractive. Rather, we are attempting to infect you with the Shannen virus. When you have this virus, you will never be able to watch Shannen again without noticing that her eyes are a little off.

The only person we know who has not been infected by the Shannen virus after being exposed to it is our friend Jyotika. But there's a reason for this. Jyotika, despite her best attempts to hide it, is British. When someone shows up in America with an obvious facial deformity, they are put somewhere where no one will see them. Like the FOX Network. But in Britain, if someone shows up with an obvious facial deformity, they are made part of the royal family. Go back!































Assuming Chris was never married, that means that Madeleine's maiden name was Madeleine Madigan. Call her Mad Mad! Go back!














Excessive Force 2: Force on Force would be a good example of a film where this happens. One wonders how these people make it through police academy training if they can't pull the trigger at crunch time. Go back!