By Vanessa Herrera
Welcome back, my beauties, to a second round of pure awkwardness.
Back in 2015 I reviewed the first movie, Fifty Shades of Grey, when the whole world seemed to be intrigued by a billionaire sadist. I had not read E.L. James’ Fifty Shades book series (still haven’t) but decided to give the movie a try. To my dismay, the movie honestly lacked a plot and was in desperate need of a connection between the actors.
Flash forward to 2017, and I find myself volunteering to go through this torture one more time. What sparked my curiosity was the trailer, which seemed to promise a somewhat considered plot. But if you know any better, sometimes the trailer is better than the film you anticipated. And so a friend and I headed to the movie theater to take a break from reality and enter the “red room of pain.”
I was curious to see the transition from the ending of the first movie. Fifty Shades Darker opens to a bright white rose filling the frame, where the title is then revealed. Enjoy the first couple of minutes into the film, because these will be the only peaceful, realistic scenes you will see. The second Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey meet again, you enter a roller coaster of cringe, awkwardness and dash of disillusionment.
The film offers a bit more plot than the first one, having more of a story form rather than just sexual scenes. The audience also gets a glimpse into Grey’s past with scenes from his childhood and the little information he shares with Anastasia. My disappointment comes from the way the plot was handled. Various malicious acts against Anastasia kept being resolved within a few scenes, giving no time to build suspense. For instance, the woman you see in Anastasia’s room in the trailer is given less than thirty minutes of screen time, yet the trailer seemed to revolve around her.
It’s funny how some things don’t change, such as the poor rendition of Grey’s character. I can honestly say that I recall Anastasia’s overall performance more than Grey’s, who seemed to diminish into the background. Grey is supposed to be a powerful man whose deep, painful darkness within him can be felt, yet all I encoded was a whiny boy who threw tantrums for not getting his way.
Would I willingly see this movie again? Probably not. I couldn’t help laughing at certain cringeworthy moments in the film (I’m positive the movie was not advertised as humorous). On the other hand, I’m not discouraging people from going out to see it. A film I might see as mediocre could be a masterpiece for others; we are all entitled to form our own opinions. So go out there and have fun.