Kyle J. Steenblik

Fifty Shades of Grey is Fifty Shades of Ghastly

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1/2 stars out of 5Fifty Shades of Grey
Directed by: Sam Taylor-Johnson
Written by: Kelly Marcel
Based on: Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. J50 shades of grey advance screeningames
Starring: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan
Running time: 125 minutes
Rated R for strong sexual content including dialouge, some unusual behavior and graphic nudity, and for language.

This film marks a new low point for WPR critics.  Simply put, this film may have broken Kaitlyn and me, an impressive feat to be sure.  What we have decided is to present you with a list we compiled of fifty things to do instead of watching Fifty Shades of Grey.  Or as I want to call it Fifty Ways to Lip-Bite Your Way Through Boring Sex.

What Kyle has to say:

Fifty Shades of Grey is an appallingly bad movie.  It plays more like an unfunny unintentional lampoon of the novel than a serious steamy romance drama, ironically, much of the film’s dialogue in unintentionally hilarious, but not in an enjoyable way.  Embarrassingly bad dialogue aside, the film also suffers from a concerning lack of life.  I am unsure if I have ever seen a major studio release a film with no discernable pulse.  I was left asking myself, how was a film primarily about bondage sex beyond dull?  How is a film promoted as a sultry and erotic romance neither sultry nor erotic, and so far from romance, that it is the picture of an abusive relationship?  How did screenwriter Kelly Marcel go from Saving Mr. Banks, which was beautifully written, to this?  I am inclined to blame the source material rather than Marcel since there is only so much you can do to transform something as grotesquely written as the Fifty Shades of Grey novel.  Finally I had to ask myself, are there any redeeming qualities in this film?  Could I at least say, “at least there is gratuitous nudity, that’s always fun to view?”  The last two questions I could actually answer with a resounding NO.  This film has no redeeming qualities.  This film has no life, the actors have no detectable trace of chemistry, the characters are paper cutout caricatures or fictional people, and the story has less substance than the air it sucked out of the theatre.

What Kaitlyn has to say:

When I walked into Fifty Shades of Grey, my highest possible expectation was that it was going to be boring. “Dubious source material” doesn’t do the trilogy by E.L. James justice. I was surprised to find out that Fifty Shades of Grey was somehow worse than I thought it was going to be. This movie runs at a punishing two hours and five minutes and somehow feels even longer because nothing happens. The dynamic between Anastasia and Christian is problematic at best and abusive at worst. The movie presents a false depiction of the BDSM lifestyle, passing abuse off as BDSM, and the so-called “kinky” sex is dull. The sex is the selling point and there is maybe twenty minutes of it in the entire movie. The dialogue is laughable with the quote “I’m fifty shades of fucked up” being said with no hint of irony. Christian spends the entire movie trying to force Anastasia to sign a contract that says he can do whatever he wants to her whenever he wants and she can’t say “no”. It also outlines what she should eat, how much she should drink, what doctor she should go to, and more. There is zero chemistry between Dakota Johnson, who bit her lip so often I started a tally that got to nearly twenty, and Jamie Dornan, whom I’m pretty sure doesn’t blink. I’ve spent the last twelve hours trying to think of a single redeeming quality for Fifty Shades of Grey and I’ve come up empty handed. Do not give this movie your money under any circumstance.

Check here to find links to various places to help victims of domestic abuse.

Our list of fifty things you could do that would be fifty shades better than going to see Fifty Shades of Grey


  1. Read a good book (not Fifty Shades of Grey)
  2. Watch paint dry
  3. Watch a video of paint drying
  4. Listen to someone read the phonebook
  5. Have sex with a consenting and informed partner (unlike what Christian does to Ana in this movie)
  6. Learn about alternative lifestyles (you’ll know more in two minutes than E.L. James)
  7. Donate to a charity for abused spouses (because anyone in a relationship like the one in Fifty Shades of Grey is in an abusive relationship. Link above)
  8. Watch porn (because there is more sex on porntube than this movie)
  9. Calculate Pi to the highest digit you possibly can
  10. Do laundry
  11. Re-organize your sock drawer
  12. Buy yourself a box of candy for Valentine’s Day and don’t share any
  13. Make yourself a nice dinner for Valentine’s Day (you can share with your family if they are well behaved and you feel like it)
  14. Watch a good romance movie (this will help)
  15. Read a book by Nicholas Sparks (because that bubblegum tripe is Oscar gold compared to Fifty Shades of Grey)
  16. Watch a movie based on a Nicholas Sparks book (see above reason)
  17. Mindlessly surf the internet (if you look hard enough you can find good porn to read for free)
  18. Sleep (in a bed like a normal person unlike Christian Grey for some reason)
  19. Take your ticket money, go to the nearest place you can buy a lottery ticket, and purchase a ticket (even if you don’t win it’s still a better investment)
  20. Marathon an entire movie series (examples include Harry Potter, Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, and what we can hope is not Fifty Shades of Grey in a few years)
  21. Watch Secretary if you want to see a good movie with kinky sex
  22. Buy one bag of M&M’s and one bag of Skittles. Dump them out and separate them by color and type
  23. Take all of those M&M’s and Skittles, dump them into one bowl, invite people over, and watch the chaos.
  24. Stare at a wall
  25. Don’t alienate yourself from your family and friends (unlike what Christian basically forced Ana to do)
  26. Taxes, on paper, by hand, because it is a skill everyone should learn.
  27. Correct your taxes that you did on paper, by hand, on the computer, like a normal person.
  28. Go to and brows their line of Fifty Shades of Grey adult toys to see the best thing that could possibly come out of this book/movie
  29. Have a serious conversation with your spouse/partner/girlfriend/boyfriend about healthy sexual experimentation and exploration.
  30. Have a serious conversation with your spouse/children (if applicable) about abusive relationships.  (Yes, we are hammering on this because it is important)
  31. Play a video game in co-op, or pull out an old board game, or card game.
  32. Play Calvinball.
  33. Get a tattoo, anything, any size, anywhere.
  34. Go for a random drive where each turn is determined by game board spinner, or a roll of dice.
  35. Clean your room.
  36. Acquire LEGO bricks, and build an awesome spaceship.
  37. Make a list of 50 things you have never done before.
  38. Do something on that list, provided it falls within the local laws of wherever you happen to be.
  39. Find a duck pond, and feed the ducks.
  40. Name every duck at the duck pond, and tell everyone there the names of each duck.
  41. Exercise, it’s good for you, simple as going for a walk.
  42. Give up on exercising, going for a walk is boring and hard, and Spartacus is back on Netflix.
  43. Find someone name Julie and tell them to do the thing.
  44. Talk someone out of going to see Fifty Shades of Grey.
  45. Start smoking; see what all the fuss is about.
  46. Hug someone.  Preferably, someone you don’t know well.
  47. Quit smoking, because everyone should quit smoking at least once.
  48. Get a colonoscopy.  This is just sound medical advice.
  49. Go eat something you have never eaten before, preferably food
  50. Go see Kingsman: The Secret Service

There you have it.  Did we miss anything on our list?

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