I haven’t seen a lot of horrible films in 2015, and it takes a lot for me to really hate something. But, Fifty Shades of Grey hit the bullseye for one of the worst films of all time.
Misogynistic, terrible screenplay, laughable acting & odd soundtrack are just a few reasons why I could not stand this film. Which is sad, seeing that the screenwriter, Kelly Marcel, helped write one of my favorite films, Saving Mr. Banks, and the director, Sam Taylor-Johnson, is known for her BAFTA nominated film, Nowhere Boy. How did they manage to go so terribly wrong?
The first problem is the story. This is a supposedly poorly written novel by E.L. James that shouldn’t have been such a hit in the first place. Anastasia Stelle (played by Dakota Johnson) is sent by her sick roommate Kate (played by Eloise Mumford) to do an article on their college commencement speaker, Christian Grey (played by Jamie Dornan). Mr. Grey is a gorgeous looking man who intimates Anastasia right from the start. However, he is happy to give her an interview for the article and leaves her a little lovestruck.
Anastasia ends up running into Christian very soon after when he shows up at place of work, a hardware store. She helps him pick out the stuff that he needs, and the two of them continue the flirting, even though Anastasia is trying to keep her distance. But of course they see each again when Kate requests they gets some photos of Christian for the article. The two of them end up going for coffee after the shoot, which turns into Christian having a sudden change of heart and requesting that Anastasia not pursue him.
As the story goes on, you can guess that Christian just happens to show up again and again, until he gets Anastasia. He tells her that romance is not for him, but if she gives his sense of pleasure a chance, the two of them can be together. So, what is this sense of pleasure that Christian likes? Hardcore BDSM. Yes, Christian, the very wealthy man of Seattle, has a special “play room” for his sick sexual fantasies.
If Anastasia wants to be close to Christian, she must agree to contract that he has that pretty much states she will be his toy and do as he says, when it comes to all of the BDSM stuff. Anastasia is hesitant at first, but she cannot seem to get Christian out of her head. The two of them obviously have sex (and of course Anastasia is a virgin at first), and Anastasia starts to go along with the whole thing. However, Anastasia finally gets a brain and decides that Christian extremely hardcore fantasies are not for her, and she never wants to see him again.
Dakota Johnson is an idiot for playing one of the most poorly written and documented female characters. Plus, the daughter of Melanie Griffith, cannot act. She is boring at times, almost being a Kristen Stewart of zero emotion. Then, her character is a very powerless woman who has almost no respect for herself, making this a terrible character for women of 2015.
Jamie Dornan is not very good, as well. He is more there for eye candy (which is not even that good), and plays a very one note character. No wonder other actors dropped out of the film when it came to this part. They were smart to do so, as it’s a very disturbing role.
Now, I don’t even know where to begin with this story and the screenplay from Kelly Marcel. This woman should be ashamed for taking on such a pathetic story and giving it laughable dialogue with no depth. First off, there is no development into why Anastasia just gives into the whole BDSM thing, or the fact she barely finds it strange that this psycho keeps following her around like a male hunting his prey. Then, Anastasia goes along with being his slave, which makes it look like bondage and having a male dominant can be so sexy. Barf. Seriously, E.L. James needs some better material.
Finally, the direction is not completely terrible. It does look nice here and there, but Taylor-Johnson chose one excruciating soundtrack for this type of a film. She is lucky that some of the songs are being nominated and will possibly head to the Oscars, but they make no sense. Pop-hits with a disturbing BDSM makes no sense once soever. This is not a romantic comedy.
Fifty Shades of Grey is a terrible film based on it’s screenplay, acting, and it’s horrible source material. There is one scene where Anastasia’s character asks, “What am I doing here, Christian?” I wonder if she was asking that literally… Rated R.