Now, here I am. I’ve read the book, I’ve seen the movie and except for a few minor things, everything remains the same. My mind hasn’t changed. I still think that the book doesn’t deserve the praises and fame it’s got and I still think that the movie would’ve been better as a dusty script in the back of a closet, kept there until Hollywood dries out of ideas, remakes, sequels and prequels.
I’m digging deep into my brains on how I should start off this honest review on a film that left me with no desire of seeing its sequel. If I should write about the story, that would be simple, because it’s the same recycled idea of a naïve middle-class girl meeting the multimillionaire hunk who introduces her to the pleasures of love and sex. Like tons (I repeat, TONS) of Harlequin romance novels and B romance movies (and a few what we’d consider A-class flicks) did before, except that they were better written and sometimes the actors in the main roles, had explosive chemistry. Yes, maybe if Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey were played by other actors with some kind of spark going on between them, then I wouldn’t be so harsh. But they didn’t. They just stare at each other from the moment they met. That’s not chemistry.
Let’s get on to the characters. Anastasia Steele is the type of girl who lead a pristine life until she met Mr. Grey. She even tells him that she had no sexual contact (intercourse or otherwise) because she never wanted anyone except him. That’s hard to believe because usually, people have fantasies way before reaching the respectable age of 21, but ok. She is send by her best friend to take Christian Grey’s interview for their school newspaper and that’s the moment their story starts.
I could fill out pages on Christian Grey’s character and what I dislike about him but I’ll try to keep it simple. He has money and that’s what’s important, right? It doesn’t matter that he keeps insisting on the rules he has set out for their relationship and yet, he’s the first one breaking them. He tells her that there’s a contract to be signed before starting anything and he takes her virginity long before showing it to her, nevermind having her sign it. He tells her that he doesn’t sleep next to anyone but he sleeps next to her. He tells her that he doesn’t make love, he fucks (yes, that’s the word he uses) hard (I can’t stop laughing!) and the first few times, he touches her so smoothly… (Ok, the sex scenes weren’t that bad as I expected). Everything he says is a lie. He’s also showing a fierce possessiveness over Anastasia, the second time they meet, when she’s talking to her colleague, Paul, in the store they both work at, and Christian just “happens” to need some rope. He orders her to go home when she’s calling him drunk to tell him that he should get his books back. His contract is filled with things that she should and shouldn’t do outside their bedroom relationship, a clear proof that he needs to control everything about her, promising she would be punished for disobeying and rewarded for being a good girl. It’s a good thing he’s rich or else, he would’ve spent his days alone at the mercy of night ladies and crack addicts.
The acting was better than I’ve expected. I liked the fact that the actors didn’t seem to take themselves seriously and that was big plus. The story is implausible if you take into consideration that Anastasia was a virgin with no sexual knowledge and nevertheless, she accepts without blinking everything Christian demands of her. The script was just cliché after cliché and there was a frightening resemblance to Twilight (Jose, the talk in the woods, the “keep away from me” warning etc.) that made the movie even worse. I know that the book is a Twilight fan fiction but were there any real reasons to include the Twilight parts in this movie?
I'm not happy that I've wasted almost two hours of my life on this, when I could've seen something else. There were only two things that would’ve saved the movie from my bad opinion: actors who look good together on screen and a better script. A way better script.
I’ll end this here because I don’t think I can say something else that others haven’t said before. As a side note though, we should rejoice. It will be quite difficult for Hollywood to go any lower than this, this year.