There is not a lot to say about this film, apart from the fact it is dull.
Adapted from the international bestselling book trilogy, the second instalment sees Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) and Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) reunite, after taking a break in their relationship due to Christian literally scaring poor Ana with his intense sexual ideas at the climax of the previous film.
So Christian casually sends his ex-girlfriend a bunch of white roses, and buys all her pictures displayed in an art exhibition created by Ana’s friend, which according to Ana is more than enough to grant him a second chance at a relationship. I feel like I am missing an obvious point here as it all comes across a little bit stalkerish…
Even though this sounds weird enough, the film gets weirder.
Director James Foley has managed to make a film based upon books which apparently swept the nation into another baby bloom, into a dismal affair. The film feels like a half-hearted attempt at a film, any plot point with the potential to get interesting is very swiftly left hanging while the film moves on with something else less interesting. The audience is introduced to new characters from Christian’s past life, who are randomly placed throughout the film and given the briefest context, thus making you sympathise with Ana when she pleads with Christian to share the whole truth of his past rather than clichéd little hints placed here and there.
Johnson and Dornan do their best with what they have been given. I applaud them for being able to convincingly say their lines without laughing at how ridiculous and predictable they sound. They do share chemistry, which has improved mountains from the first film, but this still is not enough to push the film forward. The downfall of the film is essentially the script, which is tasteless and dry.
The costumes and sets are lavish, adding to the sexual flavour of the film. The sex scenes are plenty but with the overall dullness of the film, these seem to sizzle out rather than ignite a passion in the audience like the books apparently did – although there is one particular sex scene which is memorable for being cheeky and passionate, whereas the others fall short.
The film has been unachieved, with random scenes obviously added in to keep the audience watching but actually felt like someone had accidently changed the channel on the TV to another film.
The film sets up for the next instalment where will be freed from a film trilogy trying too hard to be the most daring and seductive in recent history.
Fifty Shades Darker is currently playing in all major cinemas.