April 14, 2024

50 Shades of Meh

Yeah, spoilers.

My wife just wrote a review of this movie, so I guess I will too. We only went to see it because some Bishop at the Catholic church urged people not to.  Prior to that, I asked my wife if I could pay her not to make me see it. I went into the theater, certain that I couldn’t possibly enjoy this film.  It really wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, but it still wasn’t any good.

The movie struck me as sort-of a remake of Pretty Woman, except that it wasn’t even THAT good. I didn’t like pretty woman either, because I don’t connect with the fantasy of a billionaire who buys a penniless woman lavish gifts for two hours until the movie ends.  Nor could I consider it ‘erotica’.  It’s too disproportionate.  He’s young and good-looking, but impossibly rich and powerful at the same time.  However she is plain and mousey, with no strength or passionate interests; she didn’t have any charm to her personality, and she frankly doesn’t have a good enough body for an erotic film.  Really gorgeous women can be captivating, even with no other attributes, but she just wasn’t that pretty.  Speaking personally there was nothing there to pique an interest, especially not the interests of a handsome physically-obsessed corporate tycoon.  Not a psychologically healthy one anyway.  So it was like watching a predator toying with his prey, except that somehow she was in control of him throughout the whole movie.  So there wasn’t really anything to like from either angle.

Just let me rule you, and I will be yours.

Yeah, it reminded me of that movie too.

Throwing money at a woman when you have an inexhaustible supply of it is, ironically a cheap fantasy. Otherwise I winced at everything he did wrong, which was almost everything he did.  Controlling her through monitoring and following her, creating dependance and being visibly jealous of anything that didn’t directly involve or revolve around him. I know people like that, and I’d rather I didn’t.

Ultimately the movie was not erotic and not fun or funny either.  And it’s strange that Catholics would object to it, because, (in a sense) it was the first time for both of them, as improbable as that is.  She was still a virgin in college?  He had never been photographed with a woman despite owning 15 prior sex slaves?  He was indomitable and in command, and their sex was portrayed as an uncomfortable experience resulting from some form of self-loathing. That’s what the Catholic clergy teaches, isn’t it?

5 thoughts on “50 Shades of Meh

  1. I know quite a few people online who really enjoy BDSM porn. They HATE this book. This book does not portray BDSM as it is supposed to be: an exchange of power with wide open eyes on both sides, safe, sane, and most of all CONSENSUAL. Personally I could never be a sub and I don’t think I would enjoy the dom side either, but that is just me and I acknowledge that wanting to play those games is a perfectly normal human sexual variation. But that is NOT what happens in Shades of Grey. What happens in that book is abusive as hell. People who actually live a BDSM lifestyle hate that book. They hate that their way of life is portrayed as if dom=abusive asshole, sub=helpless idiot.

    I suppose it is only what you should expect from a novel that started out as Twilight fan fiction that had the serial numbers filed off. Considering the amount of genuinely great fiction* available for free in fan fiction, it is a crying goddamned shame that THIS is the one that made it to mainstream.

    *Yes, I know there is a lot of genuinely awful fan fiction, as well. Sturgeon’s Law, as always, applies.

    1. It’s kind of sad that a video game has a much more healthy BDSSM relationship than a best-selling book and tie-in movie. At one point, you even have a conversation with Iron Bull about safe-words. They don’t have anything of the sort in 50 Shades, do they? Considering that it’s a story about an abusive relationship, rather than BDSSM, I don’t imagine so … but strangely I’m not curious enough to read it and find out.

  2. I didn’t see the movie, because I didn’t really see the point in throwing money at a movie adaptation of one of the crappiest books I ever had the misfortune of reading. Want a great laugh though? I highly reccommend the chapter-by-chapter deconstrution done over at The Pervocracy. It’s simply fantastic XD

    1. Sounds sort of like getting exposure to the Left Behind novels, through reading Fred Clark’s disassembly of them. Or getting your Christian apologetics books the less painful way, by watching someone like Steve Shives rip them apart. Or watching someone like Logicked doing running commentary on Kent Hovind’s lectures or Carl Bough’s shitty TV show.

      It’s nearly impossible to make it through that shit without a massive dose of snark added in.

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