Matthew says: Last week the Fifty Shades of Grey movie trailer was released into the world like a physically disabled fledgling bird being tossed out of the nest. Bringing you all the Fifty Shades of Grey movie news in a timely manner, okay fine let’s talk about this trailer:
On the Actors:
Ariel says: I think they made a good choice with Ana, but not so much with Christian. I get that no one in the world is attractive to everyone, but I don’t think Jamie Dornan captures the enthralling, insanely handsome man that Christian is supposed to be. I know, I know that Universally Beloved Ryan Gosling wouldn’t have been caught dead in this role, but Jamie Dornan is just…okay. When Ana describes him as intimidating, I just don’t see it as he blandly delivers lines like, “I am” or “I exercise control over all things, Miss Steele” which are very clearly meant to be intense and sexy.
Matthew says: Was this shit ever intense and sexy? Fifty Shades has always been an exercise in laughing at how bad people’s taste can be. Okay, having said that I guess I’ll actually watch the trailer. (Fifteen seconds later) Oh my God, I just can’t with this shit. I can’t even hear them say three sentences without pausing it. What the fuck’s up with that piano? That’s straight up horror movie piano. If I hadn’t read the book, I’d be 100% convinced this Mr. Grey fellow has already died due to mysterious circumstances and Ana was getting into some supernatural spooky murdertimes. (Clicks “play” button again) Oh, I see I stopped it just before the snare drum. I clearly misunderstood the tone. (Watches another thirty seconds) Oh my God, I’m getting into the real meat of the acting and I’m getting flashbacks to how terrible this book was. “There’s not much to me! Nervous laugh! I mean, look at me! Nervous laugh! I’m uncomfortable with myself even though I’m apparently comfortable enough to draw attention with a baiting line like that! Nervous laugh!” You guys don’t really want us to watch this movie, do you? I haven’t even seen Christian Grey yet and Ana’s already made it impossible to watch this trailer.
Ariel says: Okay to be fair I’m a bit concerned about Ana too. When she says, “It must be really boring,” there is not even a hint of…anything in her voice. I’m worried that the whole film will consist of one tone of voice for her. On the other hand, I’m relieved that they seem to have stripped the film of any of her inner thoughts. You know, the ones that only consist of, “Holy crap,” “jeez,” and, “my poor Fifty.”
Matthew says: If there’s anything that will save this movie, it’ll be eliminating as much of E.L. James’s writing as possible. It’s interesting that Ariel initially commented that they cast Ana well, and then took it back. Possibly because she remembered that a broom wearing a wig would have been an equally convincing casting decision for Ana. (Has finally watched enough of trailer to see Jamie Dornan’s Christian Grey) Okay, you know what? I’m going to take the unpopular route and say that Jamie’s doing a way better job than Dakota Johnson is. Dakota clearly took so many lessons from the Kristin Stewart/Bella Swann class of acting that I’m having a genuinely hard time noticing when she’s actually in the shot. I get that her character is shy, but there’s a difference between “I am shy” and “I find your carpet fascinating.” At least Jamie is… making the same face in every scene. Yep, I guess that’s actually what it took to exceed my expectations for this trailer. People making faces. Sorry. Face.
On the Selected Scenes:
Ariel says: It was a really good call the open the trailer with their meeting/the way Ana described their meeting, I thought that was a nice touch. In a way, though, it added to the overall sinister vibe I kept getting from the trailer. Even the people who made this movie subconsciously realized this was just a horror film waiting to happen. To the point where this version of Crazy in Love isn’t seductive or sexy but foreboding. Like he’s so crazy in love he’s gonna kill her. Not got me looking so crazy in love I’m happy and our relationship is enviable.
Matthew says: I think that was less of an artistic decision to start with that scene and more their only option, because nothing ever happens in this book.
Ariel says: I also laughed out loud (loled if you will) when I saw that they’d chosen brief glimpses of the Jose-attempted-kiss-and-or-rape scene and one of the many Christian-plays-piano-in-the-moonlight scenes. Thus reminding me that somewhere out there are fans who legitimately adored those scenes.
Matthew says: I liked the quick shot of the sexual assault scene, because it gave me faith that this film will be as badly choreographed and staged as I ever hoped it would be. It wouldn’t do James’s rudimentary writing justice if we couldn’t get amateurish camerawork to match it! Christian runs in, but comes in too quickly and awkwardly shuffles onto his mark. That poor actor who plays Jose. I still can’t believe that the one not-white character in this fucking story sexually assaults the main character and then leaves the plot forever, and no one talks about this.
Ariel says: The fact that I immediately recognised these scenes also serves as a sobering reminder that I read and blogged about each and every chapter of these books.
Oh. And of course the fucking helicopter scene made it in there despite the fact that it doesn’t fit the background music at all.
Matthew says: I can’t even tell these stupid scenes apart after the interview because these books are the same thing over and over again. There’s the piano scene. Okay. Which piano scene? I really wanna know how long this movie’s runtime is. I just know it’s going to go over two hours, and I’ll just sit here, baffled, thinking, “Two hours of what?” The book was never edited. I don’t see why the movie would be.
Ariel says: It’s really hard to look at this objectively, but if you erased my memory and I went into this knowing nothing about the book, I wouldn’t take a second look at this movie. There would be nothing about it that intrigues me or that stands out. The only thing it has going for it is the hype around the book.
Matthew says: Hey, guys, have you picked up on my utter disdain for this entire thing yet? Rather than just launch into my final thoughts on the Fifty Shades trailer, I’d like you guys to watch (or skim) this trailer first:
That was the trailer for the movie Endless Love, which came out earlier this year. Notice anything similar about it? The creepy, haunting piano music, even though it’s a love story? The male character wearing his emotionally tormented past on his sleeve in comparison to a female character who’s just… there? The clear confusion between “seductive” and “predatory”? White people making the same face to convey every single emotion? The first time I saw this trailer, my immediate response was wondering why Christian Grey was working at a country club.
Technically Endless Love came before the Fifty Shades movie, but it came after the Fifty Shades book. The damage has already been done. There are Fifty Shades impersonators predating Fifty Shades. That’s a really impressive degree of fucked for our culture to be at right now.
But it’s okay. Because as long as we have shitty culture, we will have people making fun of shitty culture. So bring on even more Fifty Shades and its portrayals of emotional abuse as passion, flat dialogue as seductive, and mental illness as something that love can cure. I want so much Fifty Shades of Grey, I want George Lucas to rerelease it in a few decades and change it so Ana shoots first.
Ariel says: We want to know what you guys think. Will it be better than the books (a seemingly easy feat) or will it somehow be worse than the books (a huge achievement in a way)?