Seeing Grey

Fifty Shades of Grey was undoubtedly one of the most anticipated and controversial movies of 2015. Having said that, I did end up watching it…at home, by myself. The idea of going to a movie theatre to watch it with others did not seem appealing to me. Despite it all, I went into it with an open mind and attempted to give the movie my full attention and the benefit of the doubt. At the end of the movie, I was pleasantly surprised. I wouldn’t say it was life changing but it certainly was not as bad as others had let on.

Granted, as hard as I could try, some scenes legitimately felt like a joke and I wondered how the actors managed to film without rolling on the floor with laughter. Seriously, the script at times felt forced, insincere and manufactured. But then again, the script writers did not have an amazing work of literature to work with. With what they had, they still managed to create characters. Characters who I didn’t fully understand in terms of their actions and thought processes but still realistic. As someone who grew up reading and watching Twilight I couldn’t help but compare the two and was not surprised how similar the two were. The script (with ample amounts of added dirty talk of course), the cinematic close ups and the overarching theme of forbidden love. Down to the moody protagonist and the quirky awkward student, to the forest scene and piano motif. But that was to be expected.

The negative backlash towards the movie I believe is an amalgamation of a number of things. People blaming the movie for irrational and illegal behaviour is wrong and cowardly in my opinion. Everything done in life is a choice and one cannot place the blame on filmography for despicable acts of any kind. I myself have watched the movie and yet do not feel the urge to mentally and physically abuse someone. On the outset, the relationship between Anastasia and Christian is by far an unhealthy one. However, individuals who then feel the urge to abuse someone are the vast minority and are mentally sick or perverted. A movie of this nature simply highlights in people feelings which are already there.

My advice, don’t read too much into it and try not to analyse the movie (although I’m sure your high school english lessons teach you to). At the end of the day, when a movie makes hundreds of millions of dollars around the world, is it so wrong? If critics view this material as perverted and disturbing but it’s what society wants to see, is the movie really at fault? Or, even more disturbingly, is the movie a reflection of society itself? At any rate, the movie has achieved what I believe is the role of movies, to evoke. Take it as it is on the outset and remember, this is a movie adaptation of a book based on Twilight fan fiction. It was never meant to be one of the cinematic greats. Rather it was aimed to bring to life what the general public wanted- the magnetic attraction of a forbidden love with a couple who did more than cuddle.

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