Monday 15 June 2015

50 Shades of Eh...

(Ellie Goulding - Love Me Like You Do)

I was sitting at the hairdressers a few days ago and they had the video for Ellie Goulding's 'Love Me Like You Do' as featured in Fifty Shades of Grey.

As I watched the clip and saw snippets of the movie, I figured it was about time I saw what all the fuss was about.

I've never read the books and didn't particularly care to. While I was a fan of the Twilight saga before it became a movie, knowing that FSOG was based on or originally written as erotic fan-fiction wasn't the greatest incentive to read or watch it. (I have this thing with over-hyped things aside from Harry Potter).

I decided to watch it last night, not entirely knowing that to expect, but being an avid reader of Mills and Boon books throughout my teenage years with the idea of 'if I can't date or have sex (due to strict upbringing and religious reasons) I may as well read about people who are', I figured I'd find something to keep me watching.

For a book that was an erotic story, I was kind of expecting something more pornographic in content. Sure there's the build up in each sex scene, but then it cuts to the next scene and you just wait for the next one to come up.

I can't say I particularly cared for the BDSM which is a big part of the movie, but my hopeless romantic side did really like the idea of a high powered CEO and eligible bachelor chasing after the 'nobody' who he finds fascinating and completely refreshing in comparison to the women he's used to being with. I know this is incredibly formulaic, but it is so for a reason: it works!

(Photo credit to Google Images)

I also really like how assertive Anastasia was when it came to the contract and being with Christian. She wanted him as much as he wanted her but wasn't prepared to play by his rules completely in order to be with him. I think that shows a lot of strength where it would be incredibly easily to just succumb to temptation and possibly regret it afterwards.

I am keen to see the next installment when it apparently hits theatres in 2017 from what I've read, however I don't foresee myself acquiring a copy of the books any time soon.

The biggest appeal from the video clip to actually make me want to watch the movie is the sense of stability and security I get from Christian's character. He can afford an incredibly lavish lifestyle and he's wanted by many women all around, but he's not a douche about it. You get the sense from the interview scene between him and Anastasia that there's a lot more to him than meets the eye, as she even said to him.

(Photo credit to

There's a comfort of knowing that when you're with someone like him, you'll be cared for, protected, safe and ultimately loved. He has enough life experience to know what's what and how to treat other people to get a favorable outcome. He also has the power to make things happen which is both advantageous and a hindrance as we saw. Some people like the lavishness all year round, others like the occasional surprise of it but get sick of it after a while like Anastasia did, especially if it's to make up for someone actually being there and a monetary comfort instead of a personal one.

Again, I like that she stood up to him instead of letting herself down by continuing in a relationship of sorts that wasn't emotionally fulfilling for her because he was too scared to let his guard down and kept things physical.

These kinds of storylines are the reasons why I consider myself a hopeless romantic and always have been.

(Photo credit to Google Images)

It reminds me of a conversation I had with a pest control guy a few months ago and more recently, a talk with my therapist about being independent but also letting the guy do 'guy things'.

I like the idea of being taken care of, to an extent. I value my independence a ridiculous amount so I'm not prepared to just settle for whoever comes along just so I can be married and whatever.

I, like I'm sure a lot of women do, want a guy to fight for me. I'm not talking about playing hard to get, although that's probably what some people think it is, I'm talking about a guy putting in the effort that it takes to get the girl that he really wants. Like Christian tells Ana, she's changing him. He has his rules and she's bending them to suit her own will and he's kinda powerless to stop her because it's her that he wants and he always gets what he wants.

(Photo credit to Google Images)

I think my biggest complaint is that Ana is completely naked in a fair few scenes, yet we only see back nudity or torso and up of Christian. If you're going to have a movie with raunchy sex scenes, it's only fair that both parties be as naked as each other. I'm putting this one on the patriarchy. The same reason why a close friend of mine as well as many other fans have a problem with Game of Thrones and the portrayal/treatment of women. If they're going to be naked, the guys should be too, it's only fair.

Ultimately, FSOG is basically a big budget and massively hyped movie version of Mills and Boon books, if you take out the BDSM aspect though. I would be interested to see the character development of both Ana and Christian, so as mentioned earlier, I am keen to see the next installment in a few years time.

It has renewed my love of what I'd call trashy romance novels, given the present lack of romance in my life, but aside from that it's just a case of fifty shades of something, I'm just not entirely sure what.

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