Fifty Shades Darker, the much-awaited sequel to Fifty Shades of Grey, has finally hit theaters, and as fans flock to theaters to check out the further antics of Dakota Johnson’s Anastasia Steele and Jamie Dornan’s Christian Grey, reviews are spilling forth. While many are just pleased for another installment of the Fifty Shades franchise, they couldn’t be pressured to deliver a harsh word about the Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey love story. Others are balancing those fluff reviews with honest (and displeased) opinions of Fifty Shades Darker. While each review may say more about the reviewer than the film, it is perhaps worth one’s time to look over the harsher opinions of Fifty Shades Darker to balance out the high praise at the opposite end of the spectrum.
One Woman’s Perspective: Fifty Shades Darker Is More Patronizing Than Passionate
Admittedly, Liz Jones wasn’t a fan of Fifty Shades of Grey, feeling that the proposed journey into the dark side of BDSM was misleading and about as dark as a dish of vanilla ice cream, but even so, she attended the Fifty Shades Darker premiere. Writing for Daily Mail, Jones recalls Dakota Johnson calling Darker a “sexier” film, suggesting the passion and suspense would make it stand out, even far above its predecessor.
While Liz points to the tagline for Fifty Shades Darker, which touts “no more rules,” she suggests that the hype surrounding the film was aimed to excite post-menopausal women, and says, at least in that, the film does succeed.
Ms. Jones suggests that even those going solely for the sex scenes may be disappointed, adding that rumors of full frontal nudity on Jamie Dornan’s behalf have been over-exaggerated.
“In the movie, I was treated to Dakota’s nipples on seven occasions, but I didn’t spot Jamie’s appendage once. My companion said it was there, in silhouette, fleetingly, but I must have been doing my online Sainsbury’s order at the time: the film is very, very long (no sniggering, please) and very boring,” writes Jones. “There was no sex until about an hour in, a groping scene in an elevator that was so badly lit, I thought all the childhood warnings were true: I’d gone blind.”
What makes Fifty Shades Darker even worse than the first installment, according to this review, is the allegation that the film’s writer and director, both males, are completely unfamiliar with sex from the female perspective. For this reason, Liz Jones says she felt patronized by Fifty Shades Darker. She adds that the Fifty Shades Darker filmmakers are presenting an idealized vision of female sexuality, instead of exploring the “dirty and demanding” truth of female sexual passion.
Fifty Shades Darker From A Man’s Point Of View
It would be understandable that some women might find fault with Fifty Shades Darker, or the entire franchise, for that matter, because not all women care to see other women nude on film. Liz Jones may represent that segment of the Fifty Shades critics and that would make sense, if male critics weren’t adding their voices to the growing chorus of dissonance.
One such reviewer, from Charlotte Observer, adds his thoughts about Fifty Shades Darker and it seems Dakota Johnson’s willingness to explore her sexuality on film isn’t enough to keep even male audiences captivated for long. In fact, Theoden Janes, in reviewing Fifty Shades Darker, supplied a list of 50 thoughts that ran through his mind, while he was supposed to be watching the film.
Among his thoughts, Janes notes that he solely represented the male gender attending Fifty Shades Darker, though he adds that he’s not surprised that the film is premiering just days before Valentine’s Day.
From there, Theoden lists random thoughts, such as his failure to make dinner reservations and the fact that a few lines from Fifty Shades Darker seems to echo lyrics from a Coldplay song.
Summing up his feelings about Fifty Shades Darker, the reviewer’s last five thoughts paint a dismal picture for the middle film in the Fifty Shades trilogy.
“I’m changing my prediction: 11 percent on Rotten Tomatoes by Friday.”
“I haven’t been this happy to see the end credits of a movie since – actually, since Fifty Shades of Grey!”
“She owes me for this. We’re definitely going to see the new Wolverine movie next week.”
“Where’d my jacket go?”
In the end, it’s up to each fan to determine the true entertainment value of Fifty Shades Darker, or any movie for that matter, but a look at a few reviews, for good or for bad, can help put things in perspective.
Fifty Shades Darker is currently showing in theaters.
[Featured Image by Universal Pictures]