E.L. James has already captured the imaginations of countless fans who keep coming back for more alternative romance, as I like to call it. Steamy words transformed into sultry images in 2015 with the release of Fifty Shades of Grey. This was a budding franchise and Universal Pictures would not miss a golden opportunity cash in. To date, the frisky franchise has earned just south of a billion (yes billion with a B) dollars worldwide with just two movies released in back-to-back years. The conclusion is now upon us and there’s no reason to suspect that Fifty Shades Freed will be nothing less that a stellar box office success.
Christian (Jamie Dornan) and Anastasia (Dakota Johnson) have now become Mr. and Mrs. Grey. Their love story has now reached the pinnacle of happiness and their romance continues to sizzle. Christian is still trying to cope with some intimacy issues while Anastasia is hoping to maintain her independence. One of the most important lessons to be learned about marriage is that, in order for it to be successful, both sides will need to learn and embrace the art of compromise. Some of their past challenges resurface causing a strain to be put onto the budding marriage. These newlyweds will be tested like never before with only their fierce love for one another to help guide them through the trials and tribulations that are thrown their way.
The feel of Fifty Shades Freed is nothing if not very consistent. Power struggles, jealousy, scandal, sex, drama and kink all return in this final chapter. In addition to its lead characters, there are many familiar actors reprising their roles. Luke Grimes, Rita Ora, Max Martini, Marcia Gay Harden and Eric Johnson are all back to help lend a hand in forming a fantastic finale…well at least hopefully. By this point, expectations should come as no surprise so anyone willing to see this movie knows exactly what they’re signing up for.
The dialogue is corny and the acting is overly dramatic, and not in a positive way. Surprise…it’s exactly like its predecessors. Sex is thrown around like F-bombs in a Quentin Tarantino directed movie…shocker. And the overall plot is very soap opera-ish. These are the things that fans love so they will be getting exactly what they want. Director James Foley would be a fool to rock the boat at this point.
The soundtrack is not as catchy this time around but it isn’t terrible. A couple of decent positives here are the fact that this will give closure to those that care and, most importantly, Foley does not try to drag this out anymore than it needs to be. With a runtime of 105 minutes, Fifty Shades Freed stays pretty much stays on point with its plot, thus ending the cinematic suffering in a respectable time.
Much like its female lead, this franchise has proven that it can withstand a harsh beating from naysayers and still will come out on top. Oblivious to the critics’ tongue lashings, Fifty Shades Freed will dominate at the box office as demand should be hot and heavy for weeks to come. If you were a fan of the first two movies, those feelings will most likely continue, thus giving you a happy ending. For those that don’t see the appeal or tagalongs wanting to be a good supporting friend, spouse or hopeful mate, don’t expect to be magically wooed into falling in love the movie. Check it out in theaters now.