Summary: Based on the popular series of novels by E.L. James Fifty Shades Of Grey is told by the perspective of Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) a young college student whose life is changed forever when her housemate, Kate (Eloise Mumford) asks her to fill in for her and do an interview with the mysterious Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan).
To her surprise the virginal Anastasia feels a connection with Christian and while at first it seems they are about to enter a seemingly normal relationship things seem to be held by Christian refusing to give in to his feelings. Soon Anastasia discovers that Christian has a hidden side of his life, a side that excites her but a side that isn’t sure whether she wants to be part of or not.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 12th February, 2015
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Director: Sam Taylor-Johnson
Screenwriter: Kelly Marcel, E.L. James (novel)
Cast: Andrew Airlie (Mr. Grey), Elliat Albrecht (Olivia), Bruce Dawson (Mr. Clayton), Anne Marie DeLuise (Dr. Greene), Jamie Dornan (Christian Grey), Jennifer Ehle (Carla), Emily Fonda (Martina), Luke Grimes (Elliott Grey), Marcia Gay Harden (Mrs. Grey), Dakota Johnson (Anastasia Steele), Anthony Konechny (Paul Clayton), Max Martini (Taylor), Eloise Mumford (Kate), Dylan Neal (Bob), Rita Ora (Mia Grey), Victor Rasuk (Jose), Callum Keith Rennie (Ray), Rachel Skarsten (Andrea)
Runtime: 125 mins
OUR FIFTY SHADES OF GREY REVIEWS & RATINGS:
Worst nightmare or most eagerly anticipated film of the year? There seems to be no middle ground with Fifty Shades Of Grey and that in turn has become a dangerous thing. Some movie markets around the world decided that this movie was so critic proof that they wouldn’t even run any Media Screenings of the film something that you can only wonder has led to some critics scratching their claws and belting this film into submission as only Christian Grey could. But this is a film that also raises another pretty serious question as well. Did critics go into the film wanting to bash it, because there is no way that this film has deserved the one and half star reviews that it has been picking up.
Let’s be honest Fifty Shades Of Grey is not a brilliant film, but it is an interesting film and director Sam Taylor-Johnson and screenwriter Kelly Marcel (who also wrote the brilliant Saving Mr. Banks) have done all they can to turn what is pretty much a trashy novel into something worthy of watching on the big screen.
Credit does need to be paid to Taylor-Johnson and Marcel as this could have very easily turned into the kind of film that would be frequented by men wearing rain-coats instead of becoming what it has – an intriguing film that although billed to be a sex romp has enough storyline with it to become a Notebook-esque film with whips and chains. The fact is though that Marcel realises early on that this film wouldn’t work if it were simply just bondage sex scene after bondage sex scene so she does something you feel that many screenwriters wouldn’t and brings a great deal of characterization into the film. In turn the audience find themselves embedded in this strange relationship and certainly wants to know what is going to happen next.
Marcel’s screenplay also takes this film into some dark areas, but not the ones that many have decided to throw at this film before they haven’t seen it. Fifty Shades Of Grey is never a film that glorifies rape, sexual abuse or domestic violence, instead it becomes the character study of a man damaged by sexual abuse himself and the impact that it has on his adult relationships. It also becomes a film that explores the sexual awakening of a young woman in a way that has been previously glimpsed at in films such as The Story Of O and Secretary. This character driven storyline and the strong almost suspense feeling generated by the ‘will they, won’t they’ aspect of the film certainly lifts the film above what many thought it would turn out to be.
The knives have also been out for Jamie Dornan whom many believe doesn’t really fit the role of Christian Grey. But really he isn’t as bad as many has said he has been. Sure he may not have the charisma of someone like a Ryan Gosling but watching this film soon makes you realise that neither does Grey. Grey isn’t a flamboyant Bruce Wayne like millionaire he’s more your brooding David Boreanaz style wealth monger and Dornan pulls that off fairly well.
The star here though is Dakota Johnson. The star on the rise who has previously had smaller roles in films like Need For Speed, The Social Network and 21 Jump Street really announces herself in a role that does actually test her as an actress. Johnson is called upon to deliver most of the nudity and she doesn’t flinch once while also delivering a performance that most young actresses in a romantic role would be more than happy with.
Strangely while Fifty Shades Of Grey has been savaged you get an eerie feeling after watching it that had this been a French film with subtitles and not based on books that have been labeled ‘Mummy porn’ than this would have been a film that many critics may have warned to for it’s risqué content. As a film though Fifty Shades Of Grey is serviceable, the characters are likable and the storyline intriguing. Plus the best way to show how is does work is that if you stick to the end there is a good chance you’ll want to know where the story ends up… so hopefully that make a sequel and don’t leave us dangling… from Grey’s roof.