Fifty Shades of Grey

Fifty Shades of Grey

Director: Sam Taylor-Johnson

Writers: Kelly Marcel, E.L. James

Cast: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Jennifer Ehle, Eloise Mumford, Victor Rasuk, Luke Grimes, Marcia Gay Harden, Rita Ora, Max Martini, Callum Keith Rennie, Andrew Airlie, Dylan Neal, Elliat Albrecht, Rachel Skarsten, Emily Fonda

Synopsis: Literature student Anastasia Steele's life changes forever when she meets handsome, yet tormented, billionaire Christian Grey.

MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong sexual content including dialogue, some unusual behavior and graphic nudity, and for language


Stevennix2001's Rating:

0.5 / 10

Pros:

- Great cinematography work. Truly magnificent, as it helps set the atmosphere and mood perfectly; along with the lighting.

- Dakota Johnson tries to give a great performance, but she isn't given much to work with considering her love interest can't act for s**t, and the script severely limits her character.

Cons:

- Jamie Dornan can't act, and everyone else delivers from mediocre to downright terrible performances.

- Horribly directed

- Mediocre script that incoherently rips off "Twilight", in a lot of ways; minus all the werewolf and Vampire stuff.

- Stagnant characters

- Redundant and repetitive themes throughout the film

- Bland tasteless love scenes that feel forced rather than erotic

Fifty Shades of Sh*t....

For a story that allegedly pushes the boundaries of eroticism by introducing mainstream audiences to the world of BDSM fetishes, it's surprisingly tamed. The love scenes are devoid of any real passion, which makes it kind of a shame considering that the erotic tendencies of the story is what the trailers try to sell you on. Yet when you see the film itself, the passion simply isn't there.

"Fifty Shades of Grey" is based on a series of books by E.L. James. It was originally written as an erotic fanfiction of the infamous "Twilight" series. However, it was later rewritten to be an original piece, while changing many of the character's names in the process. And if you're familiar with the "Twilight" series, then you should be able to find some of the seeds implanted throughout this story. You have Jose (Victor Rasuk), who plays the "Jacob" role in this movie. You know. The would be best friend, who likes the main character, but he just can't get out of the damn friend zone. Ouch. Hasn't he heard of the term, "There's other fish in the sea?"

Of course, you have the emotionally distant and controlling love interest in Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan), and you have the wide doe eyed bland protagonist in Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson). As some of you reading this might've guessed, these two play the "Edward" and "Bella" characters of our story. But unlike "Twilight" that involved vampires and werewolves (or changlings as Stephenie Meyer claimed they were), this involves a corporate billionaire that merely has an interest for BDSM. He doesn't want love because he claims to be incapable of such nonsense, as he merely wants a slave to bow to his every erotic whim. How does that make him different from any other guy exactly?

All kidding aside. He's not a blood sucking vampire, but he might as well be. After all, he certainly sucks out the passion of every scene he happens to be in. As he eloquently puts it, he's a dominant. And, he wants Anastasia to be his submissive; a slave that will act on his every command.

Meanwhile, Anastasia plays along in hopes that he'll inevitably change his ways, so they can be a real couple. Throughout most of the film, Christian tries to introduce Anastasia to a world of erotic hedonism. An erotic world full of whips, blindfolds, handcuffs and various other adult toys at his disposal.

Unfortunately, this is part of the film's problem. It's redundant. Whenever Christian and Anastasia talk about their relationship, it's always the same damn thing. She wants him to love her, and all he wants is for her to be his submissive. And to make matters worse, the conversation ALWAYS ends the exact same way, with both parties refusing to budge. Outside of the ending, the film just ends each of these conversations the exact same way, with no resolution in sight.

Seriously, all these two do throughout most of the film is f***, and then talk later about how each of them want different things from the relationship. It tends to get repetitive and boring to the point that you just wish it would end.

Granted, Dakota Johnson is quite attractive to look at, and I'm sure all the ladies out there will love checking out Jamie Dornan's bare a** on the big screen. However, if you look past that, then you'll notice that "Fifty Shades of Grey" isn't that special. Throughout all the love scenes, you'll notice that Dakota doesn't even look like she's enjoying it half the time. If anything, it looks like she's merely putting up with it. As for Jamie Dornan, all I can say is he's lucky to be so deviously handsome because he certainly can't act for s**t.

Hell, this guy would easily make Vin Diesel look like an Oscar caliber actor by comparison, and that's sad because Vin can't act for s**t either. But unlike Jamie though, Vin does have a lot of charisma on screen, which tends to go a long way. Sadly, I can't say that for any of the actors in this film.

Sure, Dakota Johnson tries to deliver a solid performance, but the script doesn't give her much to work with. If anything, the script has her constantly portrayed as some lost shy little school girl getting caught up in Mr. Grey's world, in his neatly arranged adult playroom. And to make matters worse, that's all she is in this damn story. All the characters are stagnant throughout this entire film, where nothing gets resolved.

Say what you want about the infamous "Twilight" franchise, but that series did have some potential. Granted, it was still an abysmal mess, but it simply failed in it's execution. "Fifty Shades of Grey" on the other hand has no potential. It's garbage. The story was originally made to be a badly written erotic fanfiction based on an over hyped franchise, but now it's nothing more than a cheap generic knock off that tries to sell itself as being this edgy erotic fantasy, to appease horny old ladies and adolescent teenagers.

Apart from the great cinematography work that helps create this intense atmosphere for the viewer, the entire film is a mess.

I wouldn't even waste my time on this garbage if I didn't have to review it, as "Fifty Shades of Grey" is arguably one of the worst love stories that I've ever seen. Seriously, couples on Valentine's Day weekend would be better off checking out a porno or something because this film is about as erotic as a trip to the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)....

© 2015 Steven Escareno

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Comments 10 comments

Tannai Hatembo profile image

Tannai Hatembo 21 months ago

I take you didn't like the movie. I have yet to watch it, but I read the novel. The writing was poor. It's the "touchy" content of the novel that really attracts people and keeps them reading. I personally thought the book was just oaky.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 21 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Steven.....I appreciate your seriously blatant expression of disappointment. You certainly minced no words. I accept you justifiably felt no need to sway from your genuine disappointment. The mark of an honest and realistic critic.

I have not read the book and have been ambiguous about seeing the movie simply based upon controversy and hype.

My decision, it's clear will make no negative dent in the movies incredible box office draw thus far. I doubt this will cause me to be any more out of the loop in terms of the Twilight series I've not embraced.

There are themes I instinctively know will not move and/or entertain me. In fact, the hype & curiosity fails to draw me in.

I am impressed with your sincere and unapologetic review. As always you succeed in yielding genuine impression. Thank you .UP++++


rebekahELLE profile image

rebekahELLE 21 months ago from Tampa Bay

I finally finished the first book yesterday sitting outside soaking up the FL sun. As I was getting to the last 99% (reading on a Kindle), I started talking to the author. Come on, this is it? I read this poorly written, redundant page after page story for this ending?? The girls at work said it wasn't worth seeing and it sounds like it ends differently than the book. I simply could never like either character. Thanks for the honest review. I'll probably wait or pass entirely on this one.


Stevennix2001 profile image

Stevennix2001 21 months ago Author

@RebekahELLE- Your welcome. Thanks for stopping by to read my review. Yeah, I think you'd probably be better off just skipping this film completely. Although I've never read the books, but the film itself is redundant as well.

@Tannai- By "touchy" content, I'm assuming you mean the sex and/or BDSM stuff right? Yeah, I can definitely see how that would attract people this franchise, but piece of crap is still crap if anything. I mean we all bash films like "Piranha 3d" for being a mediocre to stupid film, so why should "fifty shades of grey" get a pass?

Although I still say the worst love story that I've seen is probably Ryan Reynolds' romantic comedy, "Just Friends", but I have to admit this probably came very close to beating it.

@fpherj48- Thanks. I'm glad I could help, as I'm always very encouraged by your input and kindness. :)


jupiter90 profile image

jupiter90 21 months ago

LOL, I'm shocked you even gave Fifty Shades of Grey a 0.5. I thought you would have given them a -5. I agree with you that the film was over-hyped.

Anyway, I watched the movie for the first time and I thought the movie was bland to say the least. Jamie Dorman and Dakota Johnson lacked any chemistry. The sex scenes were boring. And I didn't like how Anastasia was treated like "a piece of meat" throughout the film. Grey seemed to be more obsessed with Anastasia rather than have any romantic feelings for her.

I didn't read the book, so I can't compare. I did read the first chapter of the book. That was only because I got a free preview from Barnes n' Noble. I've heard other people say the book was poor as well.

If you really think about it, Christian Grey is an attractive version of Mark Zuckerberg.


Stevennix2001 profile image

Stevennix2001 21 months ago Author

Yeah, some of the things you just mentioned were also why I didn't like the movie. I too didn't like how Ana was treated, but at the same time, it was kind of her own fault. Granted, Christian Grey was a jerk, but he was honest with her about exactly what he wanted from her right from the get go. He explicitly told her that he only wants her for sex, yet she keeps harping on like a love struck school girl that believes that he might grow to love her over time if she gave him exactly what he wanted. Oh yeah like giving a guy exactly what he wants even though he still continues to not give you what you want has always worked....

I guess I should cut her some slack given that they did kind of imply that she's inexperienced in relationships prior to meeting Grey, and I get she was written to be naïve. However, it gets kind of annoying after a while. I mean in real life you know these people would've broken up sooner rather than later because a relationship with a couple won't work out if both parties want different things from the relationship.

Honestly, this whole film could've been an hour long made for TV film on HBO or something because I honestly don't see how this story warranted being a two hour and ten minute movie which is exactly what it was.

I never read the book to be honest, and I don't intend to either. However, I have heard from various people that the second book is better than the first, so I'm hoping the film adaptation of "Fifty Shades Darker" will be better. Personally, I don't think the next movie will make as much money as this one did, but it'll still make a lot next year.

As for your remark about Christian Grey being a more attractive version of Mark Zuckerberg, I can definitely see that.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 21 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Whoa! STOP THE PRESSES!! what??? Mark Zuckerberg???? You 2 really SEE this? You're being serious? Oh My. I don't know what to say, but you can be sure I wouldn't agree with that at all.

Mark Zuckerberg....Facebook Mark? He has always reminded me of Howdy Doody! LOL....

BTW Steve....I watched the video here again (for the 3rd time).....As for Dornan's acting ability. I wouldn't vote him as being quite as bad as you seem to feel he is.....I think his eyes (piercing) save him somewhat. I also have a feeling this "type" of movie is not his best...

I had never seen Dakota in anything. she's naturally pretty, but I kept wanting to brush her hair or style it or fix it or something!! That's probably just the female in me. Men don't focus much on hair. Still haven't seen the movie.


Stevennix2001 profile image

Stevennix2001 21 months ago Author

"I also have a feeling this "type" of movie is not his best..."

Your probably right, as a bad script and lousy direction can make any actor look bad on screen. I'm sure he's probably a better actor than I'm giving him credit for, as I've heard he does a great job in "The Fall." However, I've never seen that show, so I can only base my opinion of his acting from what I've seen from this movie.

And from what I've seen in this movie, I really wasn't impressed with him at all. Hopefully, he'll get more movie roles that'll make me see otherwise, as i've been wrong before. I mean I used to think Robert Pattinson wasn't that great of an actor from seeing him in those god awful "Twilight" films, but if you see him in "Water for Elephants" and "Remember Me", then you see he's not that bad.

Heck, I was impressed by Kristen Stewart's performance in "Still Alice" earlier this year, as I used to think she wasn't that talented either because my only experience with her was from "Twilight." So you never know.

Hopefully, all the actors, in this film, will go on to other things to prove that it was probably the script holding them back.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 21 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

LOL....."god-awful" Twilight" movies. You know I remember the "Craze," although I just knew instinctively I had no interest. Every female I spoke to was either reading the books or had followed the movies (& Actors...like they were personally involved!!) or both.

I still remember my daughter-in-law being "shocked" I knew nothing about them! LOL

Yet....we may have to ask ourselves the big question, Steve~ How is it the popularity is so over the top and the money rolls in non-stop? I've yet to see Robert or Kristen in anything at all. So I surely have no opinion. Whether they can act or cannot.....they've absolutely got their future secured, if they are wise! Hollywood is a strange, strange business. I also recall the very first time I saw Philip C Hoffman in a movie and was so bowled over, I wondered WHERE the hell he had been or I had been and why I knew nothing about this incredible actor. After that I searched for every film he had was ever in, regardless of what type of movie, other actors or anything. Each time the man took my breath away with his talent. (Sad)


Stevennix2001 profile image

Stevennix2001 21 months ago Author

Well...at the risk of sounding conceited, I could've told you why this film was going to make a lot of money even before seeing the film. However, I'm assuming you meant to ask that rhetorically. To be honest, I tried to look at this movie with an open mind, as it takes a lot for me to flat out hate a film because I can usually find some good in just about anything.

Heck, as bad as the twilight series was, I still think it had a lot of potential be great, but it just failed on it's own execution.

Heck, I was one of the few people out there that didn't think "Amazing Spider-man 2" and "man of steel" was as bad as most critics said it was. So it's not like Im completely closed minded about movies in general, and I do see your point about how everyone has their own tastes.

I guess my biggest problem with "Fifty shades of grey" is that it's basically nothing more than a glorified porn film trying to disguise itself as this edgy exploitation film that'll shock you, but it's not. I mean 80 percent of the damn movie is them having bland awkward sex with each other. Nothing ever gets resolved, and it gets kind of repetitive.

As for Hoffman, I do agree with you. He was a great actor. I'm just sad to see he had to die. It seems like a lot of Hollywood actors that I'm familiar with from my youth are starting to dye these days. It's sad to be honest. Did you see his film last year, "A Most Wanted Man" by any chance?

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