• Guy Jeffries

Fifty Shades Darker Review


Director: James Foley.

Starring: Jamie Dornan, Dakota Johnson, Eric Johnson, Kim Basinger.

James Foley takes over from Fifty Shades of Grey director, Sam Taylor-Johnson. Foley having a few more years behind the camera, most recently doing TV shows like Billions and House of Cards. My favourite movies of his being Confidence and Glengarry Glen Ross, yet I still had low, if any, expectation of this sequel to the terrible first film.

Both films are prime examples of studios producing films purely for the dollar factor, knowing that no matter how bad it is, it'll still reap in at the box office because of it's supposed controversial, erotic content. This I'll come back to. But E.L. James must be laughing all the way to the bank cashing in on her bestselling novels, good luck to her.

Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan obviously return in their respective roles, but I couldn't help thinking I'm forgetting something. I haven't read the books and I remember little from the first film. It jumps from one indecision to another far too rapidly. Almost to the level that I thought I nodded off and missed something. You know those app ads you seen, about making life choices? It's like watching a live action version of one of those games.

It mostly shows off Christian Grey's buying power and his already existing, forever growing portfolio of fleet of vehicles, lavish buildings and businesses. Just as you start to feel anything for the character, something materialistic is throw in stopping me from taking the film seriously. With the addition of Eric Johnson's Jack Hyde, it made me think this was turning into a NSFW version of Bridget Jones and really didn't understand the point of having Kim Basinger.

The chemistry between the two was, well not as raunchy as I was expecting. Each erotic scene being almost the same as the previous, however, what is different turns out to more comical than erotic and those going to watch purely for the flesh might be disappointed, however, that's from my masculine perspective.

The soundtrack is okay but is no way orgasmic as it was promoted. Sia makes the album yet again, being the seventh film in the last year she's got on to, and that's without mentioning Star Trek and Zootropolis, both the tracks written by her. As with the album, Danny Elfman does an okay score that suits the film, but it's used more as a filler in between the pop tracks.

Foley does well to keep the style intact, but it's rushed and poorly edited in parts. There's little, if any foreplay to the key scenes which is then quickly pushed under the covers for the next extravagance. It's certainly not Foley's best work and it does beg the question, why would he choose or accept to direct such a film? And he's currently directing the third instalment, Fifty Shades Freed!

Being a heterosexual man, I am interested to know if this worked for the ladies out there. Where some scenes might make some boyfriends feel inadequate, I wonder if women feast their eyes on Dornan as the hype suggests. It's just a fantasy right? It feels utterly pointless, other than to boost studio figures with Dornan as obvious eye-candy. I say that because I can't see blokes going to watch this for Johnson, unless accompanying their partners at gunpoint. I have to admit, this has been the most uncomfortable film to go watch at the cinema alone, especially with a packed screening.

Running Time: 2

The Cast: 5

Performance: 4

Direction: 4

Story: 2

Script: 2

Creativity: 0

Soundtrack: 5

Job Description: 0

The Extra Bonus Point: 0

Would I buy the Blu-ray?: No.

24% 2/10

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