It must have been about two months ago that I finally watched Fifty Shades of Grey, the first adaptation by E.L. James, on either Netflix or Amazon. For free of course. It was bad, in every sense, as expected. As I heard the next movie was about to premiere I did not plan on spending money on a ticket, but after reading some hilarious reviews the masochist in me could not resist. So last night I forced myself out into the cold to see ‘Fifty Shades Darker’. Here’s my… ehm… ‘review’. 

At 18:00 pm there were more people in the movie theatre than I’d expected, but to my great relief most of them went to see ‘Passengers’. I have not seen the trailer, still, I am quite convinced that must have been the wiser choice. Anyway, I’d say about 30 to 40 people tops were in the same masochist mood as I was and took their seat to enjoy – or rather suffer – Fifty Shades Darker. The audience mostly existed of women, but some guys were there, probably forced. Afterwards they did seem quite entertained, like I was. Although, I did desperately need a coffee. 

The Story
After Anastasia has left Christian because he had given her what she’d asked for but did not like it, she is now single and working for some publisher house. A friend of hers – who is of course secretly in love with her – invites her to his photo exhibition, where she meets Christian again. He has bought all photographs of her for he doesn’t like anyone else watching her. He tells her he wants her back and asks if they can go out for dinner. She says no. He asks again. She says yes because she is hungry and off they go. She needs him to tell her about his abusive childhood, he sums it up in one sentence and has won her heart back.

Just an example of how the whole story goes. Of course, Anastasia’s boss wants to sleep with her, there is one of Christian’s psycho ex-girlfriend-subs stalking her, the woman who taught Christian ‘how to fuck’ can’t believe Christian has changed and a plane accident that he miraculously survives so that he can return to Anastasia’s loving arms. The end seems happy, but there is a hint this tale of dark love is not over yet – unfortunately. A third part is on the way. I suspect it will be named something like ‘Fifty Shades Deeper‘ or ‘Fifty Shades Pitch Black‘. 

The Acting
Just like in the first movie Dakota Johnson has two main facial expressions: one is the innocently, slightly suffering, is-she-about-to-cry-or-not face, which you see almost all the time through out the whole movie. The other one is her seduction face, equally innocent to almost childish, which she applies to indicate she wants to have sex. Her voice fits her facial expression perfectly, which is already ridiculous in itself, and gets even more stupid when she gets a bit angry or uses naughty words like ‘fuck’ or ‘butt’. 
Her character, a woman who wants to make a career for herself, doesn’t want his money but without hesitation puts on his expensive dresses and jewellery, stays at his fancy apartment and who wants to be submissive but not really, is completely unbelievable. 

Jamie Dornan doesn’t deliver a much better performance. He has the advantage of looking really great, but you hardly get to see much of him. The workout scene, where Anastasia hungrily observes him and bites her lip for the x-time, is indeed ridiculous. I don’t know what else to write here, except that he should consider a career in porn and maybe just not talk at all. Maybe his moans are sexy. I can’t say, I did not hear him do so.

Kim Basinger’s tiny part as the evil woman who has made Christian the way he is, is just sad. So are all the other parts. 

The Sex
*Yawns*. Really, really boring. There is some vanilla sex – his ‘new flavour’ – at her flat, a very short round of spanking and fucking at his parents’ mansion (after which the theme or his dead mother has to come up again), the fingering in the elevator scene that gets totally killed by the idiotic choice of music and Christian’s strange term that she is not allowed to come – wouldn’t ‘allowing’ her come make the idea of being fingered in a public place a lot more exciting? – and the shower scene that ends in a totally boring session in The Red Room. I mean, they only use a blindfold, cuffs and some oil… Why even bother to go there? 
Oh, I almost forgot the silver Ben Wa balls! Needless to say she doesn’t know what they are for and… doesn’t want them in her butt! While wearing them at the masked party she can hardly think straight because of them. When she sits down and rolls her eyes with pleasure, Cristian whispers in her ear that now she knows what they do. Duh. By the way, am I the only one who has noticed that she is wearing a complete lingerie set before the party, but not when she gets undressed for the spanking?

The only sex scene that got me going for a few seconds, was the one where Christian uses the leg spreader on her. After he has adjusted the ankle cuffs, spreads her legs even more and then turns her over in one move to fuck her from behind… Mhhh! That toy is now officially on my wish list! 

There hardly is any. Anastasia is still curious about the toys and accessories, but when she witnesses Christian with his psycho sub, she can’t handle it – again. When he shows her how a nipple clam feels on her finger, her reaction when he removes it… Pfff.
Christian confesses to her he is not a Dom but a sadist who likes to hurt women to get off. Come to think of it: we don’t see him get off anywhere in the film at all. But then that does make sense since nothing seriously bdsm-y is happening. 
What is again sad, is the psychological explanation of his sexual interest. He chooses women who look like his deceased mother, then dominates and hurts them because his mother was on crack, had an abusive partner and overdosed. Aka the punishment theme. It is undeniable that fetishes and bdsm more often than not have their origin in something that has happened or has been lacking in childhood, but depicting it like this is just too stereotype and superficial. 

All in all, Fifty Shades Darker is simply painful to watch and not in a good way. What I forgot to mention, is the music selection throughout the film. So annoying! Ellen DeGeneners definitely selected the best part 😉