The movie, a sequel to 2015’s Fifty Shades of Grey, continues to follow the relationship between Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) and Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan). Steele, whose relationship with Grey abruptly ended after being exposed to the darker side of his sexual preferences, is starting a new job as the assistant to a fiction editor. Grey, determined to remain a part of Steele’s life, promises her that their relationship will be more open and he will try to subdue the darker parts of himself. But elements of Grey’s past begin to surface, as Steele realizes that a long-term, serious relationship with him is not as easy as it seems.
Rumor has it that the original Fifty Shades of Grey novel actually started out as fan-fiction centered around characters in the Twilight series. After having watched this movie, I feel like there is no way that isn’t true. Watching Fifty Shades Darker feels like watching a soft-core pornographic film, except the porn isn’t even good and you can’t skip through the rest of it to get to the porn. The acting is wooden, the dialogue like something out of a 70’s soap opera and the implied chemistry between the two leads absurdly lost in the haziness of the performances. Steele and Grey don’t seem to have any similarities or chemistry between the two, and the performances do not do well to mirror that.
It’s hard to talk much further about the film when so little seems to happen. The film is so void of any action, intrigue or meaningful conflict that is ascends to almost The Choice levels of boredom. I found myself feeling as though the two hours which the movie crawled through seemed longer than entire Lord of the Rings trilogy. This movie struggles restlessly to stay afloat for its duration, but forgets everything that makes a movie interesting. It’s dreary fodder, and definitely is not worth your time.