I’ll admit, it’s helpful to read the book before you see the movie. Things aren’t explained as thoroughly, which is often the case in a book to movie adaptation. A few times I felt the need to whisper something to my husband so he wouldn’t be lost. Although, I think he’d long since fallen asleep and quit paying attention.
There’s no over-voice, like in Twilight. So you don’t have to worry about hearing Ana’s internal thoughts. In the book, many of us were annoyed by them, so this is a plus. The jealousy is toned down, a lot. On both Ana and Grey’s side. There’s a few hints, but really it’s not there. In the book it was massive. Ana is jealous of the previous submissives and Mrs Robinson (the woman who introduced Grey to this sadism world). And Grey is jealous of every man in Ana’s life. Like I said, this is only in the book, only minimal traces are in the movie.
The whole, Ana being so nervous she never eats when around Grey, and him then being annoyed at her losing weight, is not in the movie. Some of his demands are also gone, like forcing her to exercise with a personal trainer, get waxed, eat only what he says, and so forth. The movie focuses the contract purely on sexual things.
The secondary characters are given very little screen time. In the book some of them play major roles. In the movie, they are glossed over. It works ok. If you read the book you’ll go, “oh that’s so and so.” And you might get a little thrill out of seeing them on the screen and a boost of pride at remembering them from the book. For those who haven’t read the book, you probably won’t notice them at all. Most of them are lucky if they even get a line of dialogue.
If you’ve read the book, you’ll know there is so much sex, it starts to get boring. Well, no worries with the movie adaptation. The sex scenes are cut down dramatically and the movie focuses on the story, not the sex. If you want to see the sex, I’m sure you can find some porn version to watch. The version in the theaters is not that kind of movie.
There is sex and nudity though. Grey takes his shirt off more than he does in the book. So you’ll see the cigarette burns right away. You’ll get plenty of butt and boob shots too. There’s glimpses of public hair, but nothing more. The directors took a more artful and elegant approach to everything. Trying to go for an emotional effect, rather than a graphic porn image. To me, it worked well.
There were a lot of things that were cut, not just sex scenes either. Less emails back and forth between Grey and Ana. Lots of subplots were cut, even those involving the main characters. But the main story line stays true. And the characters match those in the book. There is a lot of dialogue that is straight from the book.
Overall, I’d say if you read the book, you’ll enjoy the movie. If you haven’t read the book and don’t intend too, but you’re curious what all the talk is about. Then go see the movie. It’ll give you an idea of what everyone is talking about, and it’ll be easier to watch the movie than read the entire book. If you’re going because you are hoping to see sex and get aroused, you’ll be disappointed. This movie is a romance, a twisted dark romance, but a romance just the same. It’s not a porn.
I will say, my husband went with me, and he was bored. Most men don’t like romances, especially the serious kind. This was like a Lifetime movie or soap opera, with amazing acting. Did I mention the acting was spot on?
So girls go see it. Don’t worry, there are no scenes that will make you blush with embarrassment. It is R rated, but nothing beyond that. So don’t take your kids. But you could see it with your grandma.