Fifty Shades of Grey opened on Valentine’s Day weekend and despite being number one at the box office and grossing over $85,000,000, the wildly talked about film fell short of its sexually charged appeal – Unless you consider sexuality Dakota Johnsons breast’s in almost every other scene, Jaime Dornan’s backside and quick glimpses of both characters pubic hair.
Based on the book series by E.L James, Fifty Shades of Grey the feature film adaptation was directed by Sam Taylor Johnson. The female director’s most famous work is the biographical musical drama film based on the life of John Lennon, Nowhere Boy.
The film leads viewers into the obscure, and inaccurate, world of BDSM including a variety of erotic practices involving dominance, submission, roleplaying and restraint.
Dakota Johnson plays Anastasia Steele, an English literature major in her last semester at the University of Vancouver. She meets the wealthy corporate executive Christian Grey, played by Dornan, by chance when she fills in for her friend to interview him for her school newspaper.
The opening scene presents both character’s personalities – or lack thereof. Ana’s innocent awkwardness and frumpy attire is the polar opposite of the mysterious and meticulously dapper Christian.
It’s evident that Christian is a control freak bordering on creepy stalker when he propositions Ana with a written contract to be his submissive sex slave full of clauses that include no touching without permission and no sleeping together.
Ana is the naïve college student smitten by the handsome executive after their first encounter although she tries everything in her power to suppress her schoolgirl attraction she can’t seem to shake Grey. Mainly because he seems to pop up everywhere Ana is without her even telling him of her whereabouts – hence the stalker diagnosis.
The film’s strongest aspects were not the mediocre sex scenes and use of cable ties, whips and blindfolds in the infamous Red Room of Pain, but the cinematography and soundtrack.
Panoramic views of Seattle’s skyline accentuated with classics from Frank Sinatra and Annie Lennox gave moments visual depth that the actors in the film seemed to lack.
I won’t ruin it for those who haven’t seen it, even though it would be hard to spoil a film that’s so incredibly dull and uses nudity as a ploy to get the audience excited.
Ana’s innocent schoolgirl persona fades and she seems to adapt to the role of ignorant sex kitten quite easily. However, when Christian explores the true meaning of what it means to be his sex slave Ana is appalled and runs away. The movie closes with the cliffhanger of what will happen between the shocked Ana and the seemingly unbothered Christian who tries to run after her but somehow an elevator stops him. Coincidence? I think not.
There are talks that a “threequel” is in the making. Two more films before we find out if these two actually work out. That is if anyone even still cares by then.