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What Will Entice E.L. James Readers to the Box Office This Valentine’s Weekend?

By Hippiebookworm @HippieBookworm

movie posterValentine’s Day is right around the corner and couples everywhere are making plans – What to give as a gift? What to do on a date? Where to go for dinner?

This year E.L. James fans have another reason to celebrate this weekend. The notorious Fifty Shades of Grey fan fiction phenomenon has found its way into theaters and will debut just in time for Valentine’s Day.

I was privileged enough to see the film just a few days ago. Below are the top reasons that will entice E.L. James readers to come out of the woodwork and head straight to theaters.

SPOILER ALERT – If you’re not a reader of the book and haven’t seen the movie yet, I may give away a few surprises.

True to the Book (as much as possible in rated R film)


The movie stays true to the events of the book, even keeping them in chronological order. Fans will be pleased to see that the dynamic couple of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey get to enjoy all the same adventures and temptations that they did in the book.

The big moments are left intact


The time Anastasia loses her virginity. The epic ending. The glider and Charlie Tango. The “Red Room of Pain”. Contract negotiations. All the big moments you discovered in the book come to life on the screen. I didn’t miss any of the scenes they left out and was thankful for the ones they put into the movie.

Surprising humor


I think we were all a little surprised to see just how well James’ humor translated onto the screen. From the infamous “Are you gay?” question to the friendly banter between Ana and Christian, all the humor of James’ first novel makes its way into the movie actually cutting some of the tension created by the sexual situations.

Killer Soundtrack

The soundtrack to the movie is actually killer. It’s more R&B than classical, but all will be forgiven once you see how the music works to enhance the atmosphere of the action being played out on the screen. If they don’t earn an Oscar for the soundtrack, it will be a true shame.

Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele


I’m probably not in the minority when I say that I was really skeptical of Dakota Johnson playing the role of Anastasia Steele. I didn’t really have high expectations for her because when I thought of the character Anastasia, I wasn’t thinking of her. However, she really embraced the role and was humorous, emotional, fun and flirty.


Two events happened in the move that were just for the readers.

  1. When Christian meets Anastasia for the first time he has a very twitchy palm and has to grab the edge of the desk.
  2. When Anastasia walks down the stairs and is about to leave with Christian to meet his family, he asks if she’s missing something. She says “no” and they dance and then they leave. The movie goer would never know she’s missing her underwear that is now in Christian’s pocket.

The flaws? I wish they would have shown more email correspondence between the two main characters and I wish they would have made Jose hotter. I also wish that the email correspondence they did show had the humorous subject lines.

The Review

Overall, I give this movie 5 stars. I found it to be entertaining, surprising, humorous and sexy. The actual emphasis of the movie was more on the love story than the sexual experimentation which made this a movie that both men and women would enjoy. But at the same time, they didn’t shy away from the sexual encounters that made the relationship between Anastasia and Christian what it was.

One word of caution: Reading about BD/SM is one thing, but seeing it played out on film is another. For this reason, this movie may not be to everyone’s taste. It was a little more graphic than I expected it would have been. A friend of mine who attended the screening with me had the same impression. We are both pretty conservative women who grew up in conservative households and so this may have played a role in our reaction. However, it did not take away from us enjoying the film as a whole and I may have even shed a tear or two at the very end.

Have you read the Fifty Shades Books? What is your impression of the movie? Share your thoughts below in the comments area.

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