Fifty Shades Of Grey, movie review: Jamie Dornan’s Christian is like a Chippendale dancer

Sam Taylor-Johnson, 125 mins, starring: Jamie Dornan, Dakota Johnson

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The Independent Culture

For all the genius with which it has been marketed and distributed, the film adaptation of Fifty Shades Of Grey turns out to be anti-climactic on almost every level.

Shot in a glossy style reminiscent of 80s bratpack movies, as if it’s an S&M version of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, it isn’t funny or ironic enough to work as a guilty treat for a hen night audience.

It doesn’t pass muster as a romantic drama either. Nor does it have the psychological intensity of a Last Tango In Paris.

Sam Taylor-Johnson fails to put any personal stamp on the film. Her heavy handed use of music gives us the impression at times that we’re watching a glorified pop promo on MTV.

The “18” certificate liberates her to push beyond usual Hollywood norms in her portrayal of the goings-on in the “Red Room,” but she is also trying to make a mainstream movie.

The characterisation is flimsy in the extreme. Jamie Dornan’s Christian Grey, the reclusive billionaire with the “singular” tastes, is like a cross between Mr Rochester from Jane Eyre and a Chippendale dancer.

Dakota Johnson’s Anastasia is equally one-dimensional - the Thomas Hardy-loving English Literature student who works part time in a hardware store. They’re both such cartoonish creations that when the filmmakers try to hint at their anxieties and deeper feelings (Christian’s troubled childhood for example), the results are laughable.