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By popular demand: my review of Fifty Shades Darker. Warning: Spoilers, Dirty Stuff.

This is the second installment of the Fifty Shades of Grey series, with The Boy Billionaire Who Has Time for All Kinds of Bull[expletive] and The Girl Who Puts On Five Percent Too Much Lipstick. So, it’s no Empire Strikes Back. I’m putting this here because some people evidently thought this was worth reading for the sexy foodie sex stuff. They do eat a few salads and things, but it’s not like this is a food erotica movie. There is one food preparation scene. They go grocery shopping. They bring the food back to make dinner. He’s cutting up a bell pepper and she leans across him in a suggestive way a couple of times. Now if this were a movie from the ’40s, and we hadn’t already seen these two do a dozen weird, kinky things in the first installment, there might have been some energy, some sparks. But it’s just dull and dead.

Also, it’s weird how he cuts up the bell pepper. I wonder if this was a conscious choice on the part of Jamie Dornan, because he hacks it up so clumsily that I thought a cut-finger-blood-drinking scene was coming, but no, he gets through the bell pepper okay. Is he trying to depict The Billionaire as someone who doesn’t do little things like that for himself? I dunno. Then they do the sex and she wakes him up and says there’s nothing but cold stir-fry for breakfast. Which is stupid because they went grocery shopping and she totally could have gotten some eggs or something.

At one point he asks her to marry him, but she’s not so sure because he still seems kind of attached to all these crazy ex-lovers.

The movie is punctuated, like the first one, with their hasty sex attacks. Somehow this girl is just always ready in like 40-50 seconds, because if he took the time to actually warm her up — like they do in real porn movies — this thing would be either three hours or they would have to cut out all the character development, which would make it a porn movie, which it isn’t because there’s a lot of profound character development, and you don’t see The Bratwurst. Through these two movies, and I assume also in the third one, they’ve gone through, like in gymnastics and figure skating, The Compulsories. Though the arc is not consistent — there are toys and things in this one that are kind of a step back in terms of kinkiness to less-advanced stuff than what they did in the first one. More explicit than that I cannot be. Also, she’s still naïve about a lot of these machines and stuff, which even all the high school girls I hang out with on Facebook know at least a little bit about, because in these movies they don’t have Google. And everybody drives Audis. Apparently they’re the kinkiest cars.

This movie is a little darker, as the title implies. Two of Christian Grey’s former lovers come back to haunt him. One is a submissive of his who went off the deep end. She keeps popping up in Ana’s life and eventually shows up in her apartment with a gun. Christian and his driver Taylor disarm her in a ridiculously slow and mechanical scene. The other is the older woman who turned him onto the weird sex years ago. The dope on her (Kim Basinger, 9-1/2 Weeks, LOL) is that she was the dominant one and really, really hurt poor Christian. And there’s Anastasia’s jilted boss, who’s all obsessed with her. These add a little portentous drama, then are swept away, and then reappear. With no real rhyme or reason.

As in the first movie, the actors are trying really hard to make this crap work. Everything is beautifully lit, and composed, and the scenery and sets are magnificent. If only it were in another language with no subtitles.

Because all the dialogue here is on-the-nose. It feels like hours and hours of exposition. The only thing that keeps it moving is these jerky leaps from scene to scene. It’s kind of like a two-hour soap opera in that way. Except we’re not jumping between several intertwined stories, we just have to jump from masked ball to street scene to sex scene to sailboat scene to get these two to stop talking about things that no one ever talks about this way in real life. This rapidity becomes comical when he flies with his assistant in his helicopter from Seattle to Portland for a snap meeting and crashes in the forest near Mt. St. Helens on the way home. All of his family and friends are in his penthouse watching this on the news like an hour later, thinking he’s dead or something, and then they break into the news and he’s been found alive! “Hooray!” they say. Then he walks right out of the elevator! How did he get back so fast?! He has a cut on his head but that’s about it. Everyone cheers and they all leave him and Anastasia together alone to, well, you know.

She tells him yes to his proposal and they do it in his red room.

The next day he has a big birthday party, and everyone celebrates, and there are fireworks, and Anastasia’s bitter angry boss watches from across the lagoon as the fireworks go off. So I’m sure there will be plenty of plodding “drama” in the third one.

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  1. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    [Illustration by the author. Do not remove]

    • #1
    • February 12, 2017, at 10:28 PM PST
    • Like
  2. DocJay Inactive

    50 shades of Jason.

    Shall never read nor ever see so I’m glad it’s you instead of me.

    • #2
    • February 12, 2017, at 10:57 PM PST
    • Like
  3. blank generation member Inactive

    Bratwurst. That’s all I need to know. Sign me up.

    • #3
    • February 12, 2017, at 10:57 PM PST
    • Like
  4. RightAngles Member

    Very funny! I’m with DocJay. I haven’t seen either movie or read the book because EW.

    • #4
    • February 12, 2017, at 11:01 PM PST
    • 1 like
  5. Lash LaRoche Inactive

    This is as close as I’ll ever get to watching it.

    • #5
    • February 12, 2017, at 11:10 PM PST
    • Like
  6. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVeyJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    This is as close as I’ll ever get to watching it.

    Same here. When I was a kid there was a magazine writer (Mechanix Illustrated? Popular Mechanics?) with the pseudonym “Joe Gutts”, who would do the daring things the reader only daydreamed about: take a 450 mph rocket sled ride, bail out of a plane at 40,000 feet, drive a cannonball run from New Orleans to Los Angeles in a day and a half, even take LSD under medical supervision (this was circa 1962 when it was not yet regarded as an abused drug).

    That’s kind of what Jason does for us. Morally dubious? Potentially sleazy? An occasion of sin? But a chance to point out the laughs inherent in lust? Send in our man Rudert.

    • #6
    • February 12, 2017, at 11:39 PM PST
    • Like
  7. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama ToadJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I thought there was gonna be more food in this review.

    I’m disappointed.

    • #7
    • February 13, 2017, at 1:54 AM PST
    • Like
  8. Zafar Member

    Rudert, you have got to get out more…

    • #8
    • February 13, 2017, at 2:54 AM PST
    • Like
  9. MLH Inactive

    Zafar (View Comment):
    Rudert, you have got to get out more…

    Are you sure you want to see that, Zafar?

    • #9
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:17 AM PST
    • Like
  10. kelsurprise, drama queen Member
    kelsurprise, drama queenJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jason Rudert: I’m putting this here because some people evidently thought this was worth reading for the sexy foodie sex stuff.

    You know, that line no longer makes sense now that you’ve jumped from one site locale to another. Mistake? Or meta-joke?

    Someday, if I find myself in a really bad play, I’ll just hire you to come and review it. Then it will have all been worth it.

    • #10
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:49 AM PST
    • Like
  11. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    Zafar (View Comment):
    Rudert, you have got to get out more…

    What! I went to the movies!

    • #11
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:49 AM PST
    • Like
  12. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    kelsurprise (View Comment):

    Jason Rudert: I’m putting this here because some people evidently thought this was worth reading for the sexy foodie sex stuff.

    You know, that line no longer makes sense now that you’ve jumped from one site locale to another. Mistake? Or meta-joke?

    Someday, if I find myself in a really bad play, I’ll just hire you to come and review it. Then it will have all been worth it.

    Yeah, well, it was late. So both.

    • #12
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:51 AM PST
    • Like
  13. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    This is as close as I’ll ever get to watching it.

    Same here. When I was a kid there was a magazine writer (Mechanix Illustrated? Popular Mechanics?) with the pseudonym “Joe Gutts”, who would do the daring things the reader only daydreamed about: take a 450 mph rocket sled ride, bail out of a plane at 40,000 feet, drive a cannonball run from New Orleans to Los Angeles in a day and a half, even take LSD under medical supervision (this was circa 1962 when it was not yet regarded as an abused drug).

    That’s kind of what Jason does for us. Morally dubious? Potentially sleazy? An occasion of sin? But a chance to point out the laughs inherent in lust? Send in our man Rudert.

    I have my limits. This time I just saw the movie and didn’t read the book. So I’ve probably left out some nuance.

    • #13
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:54 AM PST
    • Like
  14. SkipSul Coolidge
    SkipSulJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    .

    Jason Rudert (View Comment):
    I have my limits. This time I just saw the movie and didn’t read the book. So I’ve probably left out some nuance.

    There was nuance?

    • #14
    • February 13, 2017, at 7:03 AM PST
    • Like
  15. C. U. Douglas Thatcher
    C. U. DouglasJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    kelsurprise (View Comment):

    Jason Rudert: I’m putting this here because some people evidently thought this was worth reading for the sexy foodie sex stuff.

    You know, that line no longer makes sense now that you’ve jumped from one site locale to another. Mistake? Or meta-joke?

    Someday, if I find myself in a really bad play, I’ll just hire you to come and review it. Then it will have all been worth it.

    It’s more fun when you don’t explain and just let people remain confounded.

    • #15
    • February 13, 2017, at 7:13 AM PST
    • Like
  16. kelsurprise, drama queen Member
    kelsurprise, drama queenJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    C. U. Douglas (View Comment):

    It’s more fun when you don’t explain and just let people remain confounded.

    AKA: “Rudert’s Rule”

    • #16
    • February 13, 2017, at 7:22 AM PST
    • Like
  17. GrannyDude Member

    RightAngles (View Comment):
    Very funny! I’m with DocJay. I haven’t seen either movie or read the book because EW.

    Exactly. EW and ZZZZZZZZZZ. Bad combo.

    • #17
    • February 13, 2017, at 7:53 AM PST
    • Like
  18. Rick Poach Inactive

    Jason Rudert: If only it were in another language with no subtitles.

    Brilliant.

    I hope to see more of these bad movie reviews.

    • #18
    • February 13, 2017, at 8:24 AM PST
    • Like
  19. Acook Member

    Thank you very much for this, so I cam sort of know what people are talking about, without having to do any of the hard work myself!

    • #19
    • February 13, 2017, at 9:59 AM PST
    • Like
  20. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    Rick Poach (View Comment):

    Jason Rudert: If only it were in another language with no subtitles.

    Brilliant.

    I hope to see more of these bad movie reviews.

    Let me know if there’s anything you want reviewed. I’m up for anything!

    • #20
    • February 13, 2017, at 10:44 AM PST
    • Like
  21. Liz Member

    Laugh? Cry? I’m going with laugh, because you crack me up, Rudert. (But good grief! If I think too hard about any of this, the nausea is overwhelming. Is this really what people want to see? And what about the actors? Isn’t Dornan married with children? Yuck.)

    • #21
    • February 13, 2017, at 11:08 AM PST
    • Like
  22. JustmeinAZ Member

    Liz (View Comment):
    But good grief! If I think too hard about any of this, the nausea is overwhelming. Is this really what people want to see?

    Just look at daytime television! I keep running across shows with (supposedly real) people discussing their sordid and troubled relationships. If I had to live like they say they do I’d kill myself! These shows stay on so I guess they are watched.

    • #22
    • February 13, 2017, at 11:18 AM PST
    • Like
  23. Nanda Panjandrum Inactive

    Jason Rudert: If only it were in another language with no subtitles.

    Yeah, it’s all not-fun kinky to me, already…Boring…Thanks again for saving me from it! Georgette Heyer/Jane Austen, here I come!

    • #23
    • February 13, 2017, at 11:43 AM PST
    • Like
  24. Stad Thatcher

    When all the hubbub first started about Fifty Shades of Grey, I had to download a sample on my Kindle and read it. I laughed so hard (as apparently so many sequel moviegoers did), I couldn’t delete the sample fast enough. If you want real bondage, there are tons of web sites available, not that I would know.

    My favorite is [link deleted per CoC].

    • #24
    • February 13, 2017, at 2:25 PM PST
    • Like
  25. Eb Snider Inactive

    Since you follow 50 Shades and have a sense of humor, then perhaps you’ll get a laugh out of the comic figure “The Pittsburgh Dad” who did a rather amusing review of the first movie, link here. This guy is known for making highly dated and colloquial references while being provincial. He makes references to people off camera and speaks in an exaggerated accent.

    • #25
    • February 13, 2017, at 3:24 PM PST
    • Like
  26. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    Eb Snider (View Comment):
    Since you follow 50 Shades and have a sense of humor, then perhaps you’ll get a laugh out of the comic figure “The Pittsburgh Dad” who did a rather amusing review of the first movie, link here. This guy is known for making highly dated and colloquial references while being provincial. He makes references to people off camera and speaks in an exaggerated accent.

    Following Pittsburgh Dad now. Thanks

    (also, I probably should have put a little more time into this review, but you know, they didn’t, so what the heck. )

    • #26
    • February 13, 2017, at 4:49 PM PST
    • Like
  27. Front Seat Cat Member

    Sorry to throw a wrench in this charming blog, but I can’t help it. The bondage, torture , degrading garbage that this series evokes is what our kids see as normal and acceptable – with porn available to any kid via phone and Internet, along with the anything goes culture where we keep adding letters to gender preferences, legalizing pot, heroin epidemic, depression on the rise, teen suicide on the rise, no faith……it is just more of a sad and unacceptable piece of crap entertainment, like the 25 new horror movies they seen to release every season. I know a lot of people just laugh at this sort of movie, but the popularity of this junk is degrading to women and real intimacy.

    • #27
    • February 13, 2017, at 4:58 PM PST
    • Like
  28. Richard Easton Member

    I have no desire to read the book or see the movies, but check out 50 shades of drebin (as in Frank Drebin) on YouTube. It’s funny.

    • #28
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:13 PM PST
    • Like
  29. Jason Rudert Member
    Jason Rudert

    Richard Easton (View Comment):
    I have no desire to read the book or see the movies, but check out 50 shades of drebin (as in Frank Drebin) on YouTube. It’s funny.

    Brilliant. Thank you.

    • #29
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:19 PM PST
    • 1 like
  30. Nanda Panjandrum Inactive

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):
    Sorry to throw a wrench in this charming blog, but I can’t help it. The bondage, torture , degrading garbage that this series evokes is what our kids see as normal and acceptable – with porn available to any kid via phone and Internet, along with the anything goes culture where we keep adding letters to gender preferences, legalizing pot, heroin epidemic, depression on the rise, teen suicide on the rise, no faith……it is just more of a sad and unacceptable piece of crap entertainment, like the 25 new horror movies they seen to release every season. I know a lot of people just laugh at this sort of movie, but the popularity of this junk is degrading to women and real intimacy.

    /Rant on/ Women are *buying* this junk, @frontseatcat! Don’t fall into the trap of: “I don’t know anyone who is; therefore, it must be being shoved down women’s throats – somewhere out there. ” Conservatives who care about this have to acknowledge that we’ve failed to make fidelity and mutually self-donating intimacy leading to/in marriage attractive or interesting to contemporary men and women…If I ever encounter someone offering me preachy, dated “Christian Women’s Fiction” (Amish relationships in the Old West, for instance) I’ll run the other way, screaming. How many are buying “FSoG” while they tut, tut! and Tsk, tsk! over it in public? I’m sick of the hypocrisy of so much of this. Let’s be consistent, at least…As well, it’s all so badly-written, mockery *is* a proper response. Just sayin’./Rant off/

    (You do know that none of this is describing/directed at *you*, don’t you?)

    • #30
    • February 13, 2017, at 5:38 PM PST
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