BY JASMINE BRATHWAITE
Possibly the most anticipated film of modern times, I expected Fifty Shades of Grey to at least be somewhat gripping. But it was miserably disappointing. It was box office gold in its opening weekend, raking in over £13.55m in the UK. But were people swarming to the cinema in their thousands because they were so taken in by the intricate love story they had read in the books? No. It was for the sex – and that is exactly what the film lacked.
Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan were good picks for college graduate, Anastasia Steele and billionaire, Christian Grey, admittedly acting their roles well. The chemistry between the two was very believable.
From their first meeting in Grey House, Johnson flirts boldly with Dornan and he looks ready to take her over his knee there and then. But the viewer is teased for at least 40 minutes, going through mundane dialogue, awkward stares and creepy behaviour before we see our first love scene.
This brings about the main problem with the film – the book. Christian Grey appears to force himself on a student who is not only inexperienced, but isolated from her family. His gestures of expensive gifts being delivered to her house and constant hounding about her the dom-sub contract make for uncomfortable viewing. You are also left wondering what she could possibly find attractive about this man other than his sizeable pockets. With the alleged disputes that were going on between author, E.L. James and filmmaker, Sam Taylor-Johnson on set it seems clear that meeting in the middle did not fare well for the movie adaption.
Although Dornan works well, Grey is a monotone character, cold and quite frankly, a creep. Surprise visits to see Steele across the country when she has set that time away for her mother is strangely swept under the rug. This is particularly concerning when the billionaire confirms they had only known each other for ‘a few weeks’.
Now onto the sex. For a franchise that labels itself as ‘erotica’ it hardly scratched the surface. More emphasis and time should have been taken on these scenes, if only to distract from the poor storyline. They were hastily done, chopped and screwed, which leaves the viewer a tad disappointed. The Red Room and all of its treasures were barely even touched upon, let alone explored. From what is supposed to be an exciting BDSM-filled movie is in fact a very poor plot, with a few bits of flogging dropped in.
All in all, this film did have a couple of laugh-out-loud moments, and would be enjoyed by anyone who did love the book. However, aside from its well-gathered name, it will certainly not be gaining any Oscars and could not stand up as a credible box-office busting flick.
Simply put: boring. 1.5/5