Possession (2009 film)

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Possession
Possession-2008-post.jpg
Promotional poster
Directed by Joel Bergvall
Simon Sandquist
Written by Michael Petroni
Won-mi Byun
Starring Sarah Michelle Gellar
Lee Pace
Tuva Novotny
Michael Landes
Chelah Horsdal
Music by Andreas Alfredsson Grube
Cristian Sandoquist
Cinematography Gregory Middleton
Edited by Robb Sullivan
Distributed by Yari Film Group Releasing
Release dates
  • June 16, 2009 (2009-06-16) (Portugal)
Country United States
Language English
Box office $682,173[1]

Possession is an American remake of the South Korean film Addicted. It is a psychological thriller film starring Sarah Michelle Gellar and Lee Pace.[2]

Plot[edit]

Jess (Gellar) is a sweet-natured but driven lawyer who puts her career ahead of her personal life and ahead of her marriage to her artist husband, Ryan (Landes). The couple is on the verge of their first wedding anniversary, and though they are happy, the thorn in the side of their relationship is Ryan's brother Roman (Pace). Where Ryan comes across as an honest and sweet man, Roman is the direct opposite. Roman is moody and violent, particularly with his casual girlfriend Casey (Novotny), and Jess is terrified of him, particularly as she met Ryan through Roman when she represented him in court on an aggravated assault charge. When Roman overhears Jess and Ryan discussing their plans to send him to a halfway house, he packs his bags and leaves in his car.

Jess calls Ryan, worried about what the impulsive Roman will do, and Ryan quickly heads home in his car. As the brothers cross the Golden Gate Bridge, they crash into one another and are both seriously injured. Jess goes to the hospital and learns that both Roman and Ryan are in comas. Casey arrives and shares a few words with Jess, who promises to keep her updated. Later, Jess gets her mail and finds one of Ryan's weekly handwritten love letters. After several weeks, Roman suddenly awakens—but he immediately claims to be Ryan, begging Jess to believe that he is her husband returned to her in his brother's body. He implies that something supernatural happened when their bodies were revived side by side on the road, but cannot explain the phenomenon. Jess is initially doubtful and hostile towards Roman, believing that he is disoriented from his head injuries, and she employs Casey's help in trying to get him to regain his memories.

However, he maintains that he is Ryan, continually offering romantic gestures and recounting specific memories private to them. Eventually, after a year passes, once he accurately recalls the story behind a certain photograph of the two of them, she believes that he is truly her husband and they resume their romantic life. Despite the disapproval of Jess' co-workers and a harsh reaction from Casey, who still believes that he is actually Roman, Jess and Ryan fall back into their former happy marriage, although Jess is still hesitant to turn off the machines keeping Ryan's body alive. They are both soon thrilled by the news that Jess is pregnant. Casey goes missing, but when the police question them, Ryan merely says that she was "troubled". Jess notices a discrepancy in a necklace that Ryan gave her before his accident, but brushes it aside until she discovers the original necklace hidden in a picture frame.

She then discovers that the box in which she kept all of Ryan's many love letters and photographs has been broken into, and she realizes that Roman has in fact lied to her, having previously studied the pictures and letters to learn the details of their marriage to impersonate his brother. When she confronts him, he quickly grows violent with her, saying that he did it because he loved her and knew they were meant to be together, saying that she must have sensed that it was him all along, and it is revealed that he murdered Casey because of her suspicions. As Roman and Jess fight, Ryan, in the hospital, experiences a seizure. Jess finally manages to stab Roman with a pottery knife, and he dies as the doctors work on Ryan. Later, at the hospital, Jess learns that her baby sustained no injuries from Roman's attack and that Ryan managed to pull through his episode, and she sits by his bedside, promising to wait for him and start their life over once he returns to her.

Alternate ending[edit]

There is a 30 minute alternate ending on the DVD that fundamentally reconstructs the narrative. This ending is similar to the Korean original.

Jess and Roman/Ryan decide to turn off Ryan's machines, and he dies and is cremated. Rather than being murdered by Roman, Casey merely moves away. Jess realizes that Roman has lied to her by reading Ryan's love letters, but decides to feign ignorance and continue their life together, apparently appreciative of the fact that he so desperately wanted to change for her, echoing the theme of "change is choice" as stated in earlier scenes.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Originally to be known as Addicted (like its Korean original) and while news of the name change emerged in early August 2007, it was mid December before it was confirmed by the producers with Sarah Michelle Gellar not being sure of its name in the intervening period.[2]

The film is set in San Francisco, however it was filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Release[edit]

The film had a range of release dates—starting with February 2008. The film was finally set to be released in theatres in January 2009, but due to financial problems at YARI Film Group,[3] the release was yet again pushed back.

With theatrical trailers finally in theaters and a firm release date set, Yari Distribution lost their funding and filed for chapter 11 in conjunction with a nationwide financial collapse. The distributor struggled for a year to renew their financing but in March 2009, it was ultimately announced that the film would not see a theatrical release. It was supposed to be released in the U.S. on DVD/Blu-ray Disc on May 12, 2009, by Fox Home Entertainment, however, the release was cancelled.[4][5][6]

However, in early April, the release was delayed, as rumors for a summer theatrical release through Spitfire Pictures surfaced.[7]

It was released in July 2009 in Portugal.

The movie was released theatrically in Israel on August 20.[8][9]

The movie was released straight to DVD in the U.S. on March 9, 2010, also on Blu-ray Disc.[10]

On April 3, 2010, the movie was theatrically released in the Philippines.[11]

References[edit]

External links[edit]