‘Fifty Shades Freed’ Earns Worst Screenplay Award At 2019 Razzies

Fifty Shades Freed screening
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The 2019 Razzie awards have been announced and despite a clean-up year for the critically detested Holmes & Watson, it was Fifty Shades Freed that edged out the Sherlock Holmes re-imagination to bring home the award for Worst Screenplay, Vulture reports. Other nominees in the category included Death of a Nation, Gotti, The Happytime Murders, and Winchester.

Fans didn’t care much for the latest Fifty Shades installment either, with an audience score currently sitting at 38 percent.

The New York Times joined most major critical bodies in panning the film, finding little to redeem the third and final installment, which has been recognized as not only falling short of ongoing audience expectations but continuing to add puzzling action/thriller subplots to fill the runtime.

“Layering a damp-squib thriller subplot beneath what appears to be an ad campaign for the one-percent lifestyle, the returning director and screenwriter (James Foley and Niall Leonard) test the newly married couple with an inconvenient pregnancy and an unconvincing car chase,” said Jeannette Catsoulis for The Times.

Variety would strike a similar tone, likewise lamenting the generally shallow content of the source materials, particularly by the third film.

“By round three, there’s nothing left to discover in Anastasia and Christian — characters who, even at their most engaging, weren’t exactly Chekhovian to begin with. With the root of his sadism, her masochism and the mood music their combined issues make together all adequately explored, we’re left mostly rehashing old tensions that, with familiarity, have gone a little slack,” wrote Variety’s Guy Lodge.

In addition to the film’s win in the Worst Screenplay category, 50 Shades Freed also picked up additional nominations. These included a Worst Supporting Actress nod for Marcia Gay Harden and Worst Director for James Foley, who also wrote the thoroughly-panned screenplay.

Foley was spared being recognized with two wins tied closely to his own contributions thanks to Etan Cohen for his almost universally disliked Holmes & Watson. Harden avoided the Worst Supporting Actress award due to unconventional winner Kellyanne Conway, the Trump advisor who picked up the nomination and win due to a documentary appearance in Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 11/9.

The Razzy Awards, short for The Golden Raspberry Awards, were created by UCLA film graduates and film industry veterans John Wilson and Mo Murphy. The awards have been given since 1981 when the award ceremony took place in Wilson’s living room. The 2019 awards represent the 39th instance of the awards, which is timed annually to coincide with the Academy Awards.