- Loving Film
- Weekly Features
- Other Features
- Review Index
- Rating System
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Fifty Shades of Grey
|By Sati.||Wednesday, February 18, 2015||#, 2015, F, Fifty Shades of Grey, movies, review, Romance, Sam Taylor-Johnson|
I love bad movies. Whenever Nic Cage has a movie out, chances are sooner or later - I'll see it. So when something as atrocious as Fifty Shades of Grey shows up I naturally need to watch it. I did not read the 'book' this 'movie' is based on but I heard the comments that it's even worse than a film. I'm not surprised. What occurred to me during watching this film is that truly there are still some things that can surprise me.
For example - Charlie Hunnam, who was originally cast as Grey. I'd never think that comparing to anyone I'd find him attractive but Jaime Dornan managed to accomplish that. Because had Hunnam played Grey this character would at least be...what's the word? ALIVE. What did I learn from Fifty Shades of Grey? Is that I most definitely do not have any symptoms of being into necrophilia. I was not turned on once during this film nor did at any point I considered Dornan to be remotely attractive. If me and him were the only people left on Earth I'd sooner kill him for food than fucked him. What am I on about? What this movie primarily is, ladies and gentlemen, is observing though 100 minutes of runtime the efforts of Dakota Johnson trying to revive her co-star. To no avail.
I have never thought that it is possible to look both bored and at the same time as if one were in excruciating pain. But man, did Dornan managed that. His performance in this film is so spectacularly awful you almost wonder if it's perhaps some higher form of method acting and he stuck a gigantic stick up his ass in order to embrace the persona of S&M loving businessman. But I don't think it was the case. I think he was simply this bad.
Had they cast someone with pulse or a shred of charisma this movie could have had a shot of being something other than just hilarious unintentional comedy. But Dornan depicts the most unprofessional behavior I witnessed in film in along time - he gives the impression of someone who is just there for fame and money and in all of his scenes he is simply not there. He went to his happy place. He listened to his inner goddess. He gives absolutely no fuck.
Dakota Johnson truly owes him. Next to him her performance comes off as incredible - she is one of the very few people in this movie who actually plays someone resembling a human being. Her character starts off as kinda cute but then Dornan, Mr. No Pulse, enters and essentially what happens is that we have this girl who falls for this petulant asshole because he is - apparently - good looking and rich.
I had a blessed childhood. When I was growing up all the girls were into Leo DiCaprio in Titanic. A romantic, smart, kind, artistic hero who gave up his life for a woman he loves. Nowadays girls have baby faced asshole who grimaces when he has to give up vaginal fisting.
I weep for humanity.
The story is basically the stock story of every romance ever told - a shy girl, a good looking guy, an obstacle. But here they added the twist of all the kinky sex. But the sex isn't that kinky, shocking or even engaging. I enjoy being submissive in bed. I have nothing against playful spanking. So you'd think at least I'd relate on some level to the protagonist, right? No such luck. There is absolutely nothing arousing here. The only scene that is remotely erotic is Anastasia and Christian negotiating the contract which involves Christian talking about what he wants to do to her. But when the sex is actually shown it's really just some footage of tits, moaning and Dornan appearing in the frame assuring no one climaxes upon seeing his dull, lifeless expression.
The only thing more ridiculous than this story is the trivia for this film. "Jamie Dornan had to learn how to walk differently to play his character since he tends to walk on his toes than his heels." Oh yeah. Because with this guy his WALKING was the problem?!
Say what you want about Twilight but these two had chemistry. When they kissed for the first time, it was electrifying. There is no such thing in Fifty Shades of Grey. The sex scenes are not only tame but also boring. But here's what's really sad - when it comes to American movies these days those scenes where actually graphic even with all the ridiculous maneuvers of the cameraman to God forbid not show any full frontal by accident. We are living in a world where filmmakers have no problem having two leads with absolutely no chemistry in a romance film but they are horrified of showing someone's privates in erotic film. This is madness.
What is also mad is that no one even bothered to clean this story a bit from all the idiocy. A scene for example - Grey is doing his strong and intimidating act while we see Dornan looking like a 15 year old whose biggest rebellion was knocking over some legos and he is about to get all kinky when upon hearing a noise he goes 'It's my mother! Get dressed!'. So Christian Grey who has this apartment with his little red room of pain can't even get the fucking locks correct so that his relatives don''t know his activities and walk into some sort of kinky situation where he braids a girl's hair or something (this is what passes for kinky these days, apparently)? I know we were probably required to leave our brains at the door while we walked in the theatre, but come on.
Christian is super rich. What does he do? It's not important. Anastasia is apparently alluring to him because she is virginal and innocent. So this dude who is this rich businessman has never in his life met anyone like that before until Ana - in one of the dumbest and most contrived plot devices in recent memory - stumbled into his office to interview him? The film is trying to sell this idea that her being his 17th submissive is some sign of great love being found. It would be offensive, had it not been this hilarious.
I had great time watching this. I laughed so hard. The lines in this are just golden - I promise you will at least chuckle while you witness baby face utter the words 'I don't make love. I FUCK. Hard'. Not only is this a ridiculous line to begin with but try to imagine this guy actually fuck hard. He'd die. The things that are said and done here - including Ana getting spanked for rolling her eyes - are so monumentally stupid and embarrassing it's impossible not to laugh. In fact there are so many funny things here that I don't even have the strength to stop laughing and mourn the fact both Marcia Gay Harden and Jennifer Ehle are in this, no doubt trying to pay off the mortgage on some expensive house they bought.
A credit should go to Sam Taylor-Johnson for actually trying to do something with this story and not making it incredibly dull in spite of the main duo being a dead guy and a giggling virgin. There is a lot of humour in here, yes, most of it unintentional but they are really trying everything to cover the film's many shortcomings - the music for example, both the choices of songs and Danny Elfman's alluring original score, is fantastic and there are few scenes that actually have energy to them mostly whenever Ana gets to depict some sort of joy during their encounters. Dornan expresses no such thing. It really comes off as just some rich dude who likes to humiliate and beat up women. At no point of the movie Grey does look remotely content or aroused. We saw bigger joy this year when Julianne Moore took a crap in Maps to the Stars.
Crap that was probably infinitely more alive, on a molecular level, than Mr. Grey is.
Fifty Shades of Grey (USA, 125 min)
Plot: Literature student Anastasia Steele's life changes forever when she meets handsome, yet tormented, billionaire Christian Grey.
Director: Sam Taylor-Johnson
Writers: Kelly Marcel (screenplay), E.L. James (novel)
Stars: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Jennifer Ehle