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Boobs: An American Obsession (2010)

Everyone knows that men are attracted to boobs, that reality is indisputable. However, the reason why is not necessarily so clear. Boobs: An American Obsession is director Nina Brownfield-Berry’s attempt to explain to the world not necessarily that America has an obsession with boobs, but why they do and how that obsession takes shape. Through a series of interviews with people on the street, doctors and actors, Brownfield-Berry attempts to tell the world what is leading them down a road of obsession toward boobs. This documentary aims to inform and educate through a series or interesting accounts of individuals’ experiences with boobs in the real world. So, strap in and get ready for an interesting ride.

How does one create a legitimate documentary about boobs without it seeming creepy or unacceptable? Well, introduce the world to a number of professionals including nurses, doctors and surgeons who are willing to express, in great detail, where the obsession comes from and ultimately what that American obsession eventually leads to. Boobs: An American Obsession finds ways to express this obsession in ways that I had never heard before, however, it feels that, just as quickly as these individuals begin to explain the obsession, the documentary veers from that lane and begins talking more and more about breast augmentation.

As quickly as the documentary is able to explain why men (and women) love boobs, Boobs: An American Obsession begins to focus heavily on the idea of breast augmentation and veers too far from the expected path. What ultimately turns viewers off to the film is that many of the viewers are tuning in with the expectation that, while the film might be a bit silly, information would be provided that would ultimately lead to a better understanding of this titular phenomenon, but this is not the case. A large portion of Boobs: An American Obsession focuses on what seems to be an attempt to convince viewers that breast augmentation is not only acceptable (which I have no objection to if the person is comfortable with the augmentation) but genuinely encouraged. As the “plot” of the film unravels and viewers see exactly where it’s going, it becomes very difficult to remain focused because they feel like they are being forced to think one way.

The individuals tasked with choosing people to be interviewed throughout Boobs: An American Obsession did a terrible job (for the most part) in finding acceptable people to guide the film. Some of the individuals being interviewed (regardless of the fact that this film is meant to focus on an obsession) come off as creepy and truly odd, becoming huge turn offs for viewers. Some of the guys who take part in the film appear to care about nothing more than to sexualize women’s breasts. Their role in the film and their integrity comes into question, leading the film--and Brownfield-Berry--to lose some credibility. Hearing these men oversexualize women and appear to have no respect for them in any regard other than sexual is almost sickening and caused me to cringe on numerous occasions.

As the Boobs: An American Obsession begins to wrap up, it seems that the crew attempts to backtrack and right the wrongs that have been strewn throughout the film. As the interviewees begin explaining to the audience how unimportant boobs are, their integrity comes even more into question. Not only were they a bit raunchy throughout the film, but they are unable to stick to their word and seem to change their way of thinking, not because they had a change of heart, but because they feel as if they are being judged for it.

I can’t help but to think that the cast and crew of Boobs: An American Obsession jumped at the opportunity to make this documentary simply due to the fact that they have this unhealthy obsession with boobs. The majority of people present throughout the film do not appear to have a genuine knowledge on the subject and are completely subjective in their approach toward explaining what is so magnificent about boobs. When a documentary makes a genuine approach toward trying to enlighten and inform audiences but fails due to some incompetence, I look to the head of the film and question what their true intentions were. Did they really attempt to inform, or was their goal simply to have a juvenile discussion about sex? Boobs: An American Obsession fails hard and leaves viewers failing to see the allure of anything said and done throughout the film. For those that took part in this film in order to educate and ultimately speak their truths about the sexualization of boobs, their stories are overrun and overshadowed by childish attempts to make jokes about serious topics. The transgressions of this film are nearly unforgivable and the crew should be ashamed of their attempts to bring this particular topic to light.

Directed by Nina Brownfiled-Berry. Starring Tom Arnold, Mamie Van Doren, Garth Fisher, Faleena Hopkins, Irina Voronina, etc.




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