Back in 2012, when the furor surrounding EL James’s Fifty Shades of Grey was in full effect, I wrote a series of snarky mini-reviews on the book which focused primarily on how bad the writing was, and how silly much of the non-existent plot was. But for the most part I didn’t seem concern myself too much with the deeper themes of the book because mocking inner goddesses and ellipses took up an awful lot of my time.
Now, three years later, with the movie finally in theaters, it seems like media outlets are tripping over themselves to cover every minute detail about both the production and the final product: Do the stars have chemistry? Do they secretly hate each other? What caused all of author EL James and director Sam Taylor-Johnson’s on-set fights? And, finally, is it any good?
MarkReads and the Case for Domestic Abuse
But while said outlets are dying to tell you whether or not Jamie Dornan’s accent was up to snuff (it wasn’t) or whether Dakota Johnson’s performance transcended the text (it did), many are shying away from what’s become a growing and troubling question surrounding the movie and the series it’s based on: Beyond the BDSM, beyond the helicopter rides and the dungeon of endless orgasms, is this just a story about domestic violence dressed up as kinky romance?