Monday, 23 February 2015

50 Shades of Rubbish

Worth avoiding at a cinema near you now: Fifty Shades of Grey. This trilogy should stop believing its own hype.

So I read the first book. It was on the shelf of a lovely house in France where I was staying and we laid by the pool sunbathing for hours and I read all my books before the end of the holiday. So I read this just to see what it was like. I thought the writing was poor, the sex scenes were pretty repetitive and used some irritating terminology over and over. And in essence it was a love story where a virgin falls for a man and they eventually get it together. With some lightweight sado-mascicism thrown in - all be it in a female clichéd fantasy of red velvet 'play-rooms', leather horses and mechanical winching devices. I had no desire to find out what happened next.

We went to see the film. Out of interest. On a recommendation from some much younger people. The panther was the only man in the cinema. I found it somewhat boring. For a film classified as an 18 I didn't expect all the sex scenes to be truncated (never saw below his waist). I'm sure I've seen films with male full frontal before (I'm thinking of Room with a View and a party of naked men running round a bathing pond, or Eyes Wide Shut). I believe there has been female genital on film also (remember the hoopla of Sharon Stone's leg crossing in Basic Instinct). The film purportedly about sex with many sex scenes, turned out to be decidedly untitilating in any way. 

Little on screen chemistry, a totally unbelievable leading man (far too young, not half good looking or striking enough, unconvincing in the extreme) and a sort if rag doll of a leading lady who had little of the vulnerability of a supposed virgin. She was sort of just awkward. 

This had neither sex appeal, titilation (I'm not turned on by yuppy banker sorts and their steel and glass minimalist penthouses), nor the trappings of any fantasy. It reminded me too much of American Pyscho. 

Later in discussion with the youths who recommended it I realised that having seen much more film than them I have too many to compare it to that were more sexually appealing to me. I'm thinking perhaps of the French film The Hairdresser's Husband, scenes from Betty Blue, Daniel Day-Lewis in The Unbearable Lightness of Being or indeed in My Beautiful Launderette, parts of Room with a View. Even the fantasy of Moulin Rouge. I'm forgetting where the real sex appeal in film is perhaps but these come to mind as films that whetted the appetite. 

Too linear. Too little fantasy. No on-screen chemistry.

I'm upset that women are falling into this trap of thinking that its such a risqué fantasy to play a submissive to this powerful rich man. Isn't that just an old rehashed 1950s female desire (marry a man who will look after you, have children, be chained to the kitchen sink). Aren't there any more exciting, nay modern female fantasies we could explore?


Anonymous said...

Lousy movie or not, it's raking in the money.
Guess there's no accounting for bad taste.


Harriet (the fshlady) said...

I guess you are right - we jump on the band wagon of hype.

la peregrina said...

"Later in discussion with the youths who recommended it I realised that having seen much more film than them I have too many to compare it to.."

And that is the rub. The younger women have been brought up on books like the Twilight Saga; which, as you and I know, is a badly written, boring series of romance books and movies. They just do not know any better.

Harriet (the fshlady) said...

Its a shame - there is a lot of literature and film from the past (and not too distant past) that is much better than this which deserves to be seen, even in (mock horror) black and white. People miss out by not going back sometimes.