The Best Part about Fifty Shades Freed is That We’re all Freed from the Franchise Now.
Well, I finally did it. I didn’t want to, but I sat down and watched a Fifty Shades movie for you guys out there. I’m not saying I’m a hero, but I think I deserve at least a thank you card after this one. Look, I’m not even sure why I’m even writing up a review for Fifty Shades Freed because deep down we know that this is going to be a dumpster fire of a movie. Normally, I could walk away from such a film and just pout about it being so terrible, but this franchise is so much bigger than terrible movies.
Fifty Shades Freed romanticizes the ideas of toxic relationships. It gives audiences a role model in Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) who is controlling, manipulative, and bordering on sociopathic. By the third film though, his behavior has rubbed off on his wife (Dakota Johnson) and she seems to think that jealousy is empowering. Of course, this ends up turning very much into a subplot of women tearing down other women in an attempt to get ahead, which only makes the lovely couple seem like the worst possible people. I mean, they even drive like yuppie scumbags, cutting off semi-trucks and endangering lives on the roads before using it as an excuse to have more sex with each other. In other words, this is a movie filled with red flags.
It goes without saying, but Fifty Shades Freed is a wet paper bag of a movie because it’s so easy to poke holes in the plot. The biggest threat to the newly married couple is a former employee what has set out to ruin their lives. A lone, madman who might seem dangerous, but also seems like something that money could very much easily get rid of. Then again, this ominous threat is pretty pathetic at best. It would be laughable if it wasn’t so obnoxious that the main characters keep succumbing to his demands. I guess it just goes to show that money doesn’t always equate to intelligence.
It’s hard to accept that director David Foley is responsible for this absolute train wreck of a movie. He’s a man known for doing great work on series such as House of Cards and movies like Fear. Fifty Shades Freed is a mess in every possible way. There’s barely any chemistry between the characters and it often resorts to montages to show just “how in love they are” riding bikes through Paris or sailing on yachts. These scenes though are undermined though, because the two are often at odds and acting like spoiled children when they actually have dialogue. Needless to say, the romantic aspect of this movie is non-existent. The reason behind why people rushed out to see Fifty Shades Freed is completely lost on me.
From a more technical aspect, Fifty Shades Freed is atrocious. The pacing takes off at breakneck speed from the beginning, only slowing to make full use of the gratuitous amounts of love making the characters indulge in (seriously Christian Grey must be on something for him to be that horny all the time). In a lot of ways, it’s a very clear choice to rush through the parts where people have their clothes on. Because who wants to deal with things like character development or plot when you can have more naked people awkwardly gyrating their hips?
Anyone thinking that this might be a good Valentine’s movie to see with their sweetheart should seriously reconsider. Fifty Shades Freed is not just a bad movie, but it’s one that is going to have a prolonged impact on relationships for a long time. Personally, I think that modern relationships are falling apart, and to a certain extent, Hollywood needs to take responsibility for forcing films like this into the mainstream. People are suffering because of the thematic elements of the Fifty Shades films that are supposed to show what “true love is.” True love isn’t about controlling the person you hold most dear. It’s not about being jealous and trying to cut them off from the people they’re closest to. It’s not about buying them off with extravagant gifts. Fifty Shades Freed is the love that the 1% must feel, because apparently if you really love something, you own it.
P.S. It just dawned on me that Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey have last names that pretty much condemned them to their miserable love with each other.