Love Object Written and directed by Robert Parigi
Opens February 13, Angelika
Inspired by a website offering "anatomically correct" sex dolls, Love Object utilizes horror movie jolts to plumb male control-freakishness. L.A. tech-manual writer Kenneth (Desmond Harrington) purchases "Nikki" to enact his fantasies about assistant Lisa (Melissa Sagemiller), whom the doll has been made-to-order to resemble. All is well until Kenneth strikes up a relationship with Lisa. The moment he discovers that "Nikki" shredded Lisa's high school zine is worthy of Fatal Attraction, but Parigi eschews camp and plays it low-key, even during man-on-doll action, and uses his shoestring budget shrewdlyspare sets link Kenneth's banal surroundings to his vertiginous retreat into fantasy. The film finally dives headlong into shock (as Kenneth lends new meaning to the objectification of women) on its way to a disturbingly ironic ending.