There’s something wonderful about living in the communication age: you can get a very good idea of what something’s about before making contact. So I’ve availed myself of every means of learning about 50 Shades of Gray without actually spending money on the thing. Since Rotten Tomatoes has given it a freshness rating of 26% as of today, February 16, I consider all my tech savvy and computer acquisitions to have been worthwhile. There are surely better ways to waste time than watching movies without checking them out first.

Fan Fiction is something I have passing acquaintance with, and if you don’t set the bar too high, it’s good cheap fun to see how others play in a familiar universe of classic fantasy. I’m still longing for the story of the horrible death of Jar Jar Binks, and what Gollum was really like as a first grader. Any story coming from the Twilight universe is suspect to me in the first place: it is one of the few series I ever tried to read and couldn’t finish because the banality of the story overwhelmed me. I cheated and read Wikipedia summaries to finish that project, and did the same with 50 Shades. In all humility, I feel I’ve chosen the better part and am glad I didn’t download the latter. It’s not because the subject is taboo, it’s because it seems to be a horrible quality story, a tale badly told with unbelievable characters, but not bad enough to be good kitsch.

This isn’t to say I don’t have a spirit of romance. Well, I don’t have much of one, but consensus says this movie doesn’t have one either. I am wondering if the story about the main actors not liking the movie is true, which would say a lot about it. What makes me calm about the situation is it seems to be a horrible movie in the first place, even though it’s made a ton of money its first weekend, so I’m not worried about it and what influence it might have.

In the end, if I had a daughter I wouldn’t get terribly upset if she watched 50 Shades of Grey. I would hope I had raised her not to be impressed by the standards embodied by this movie. I would be terribly afraid if she took it seriously, and in that case, book her some serious psychotherapy as quickly as I could.


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