2/18/15

50 Shades of Grey . . .

No. I didn't read the books. No. I didn't see the movie. I don't need to. I have Google and all the porn (soft cord, hard core, "female friendly", and otherwise) I could ever possibly want to watch for free.

I'm not here to judge anyone who read/enjoyed/was titillated by the books and I certainly would not get in the way of the over eight million people who saw the movie in the first week alone (driving receipts to a record $81.7 million) saying the enjoyed it - or not.

From what I understand the books are exactly what they claim to be . . . sexually provocative prose and the movie is exactly what it claimed to be . . . a refined, high definition, sexually provocative version of the books. I'm fine with these things.

Know what I'm NOT fine with? The criticism. No, no. NOT of the book or movie (critics do what critics do). The notion that the book or the movie are somehow going to degrade sexual relations between humans.

I'm not sure if you're paying attention, bible grippers with well-worn rosary beads and sensible shoes, but we're not exactly living in a world where sex is cherished and special. I'd LIKE it to be a little more cherished and special than it is but I'd be a liar if I said I was bothered by the notion that two consenting adults can do with their bodies what they wish. They can. They should.

People who believe "50 Shades of Grey" will in any way harm or degrade our values are not paying attention to the bigger picture. A) Just eight million people saw the movie. That is a HUGE number but less than two percent of the population of this great, free land of ours. By contrast 118 million people (34%-ish) watched the Super Bowl and very few of them knocked their fiancees out, whipped their children, drove drunk, or abused drugs that evening. Okay. Bad example.

Better one? Let's talk about Sex and the City. You remember "SATC", right? Four swinging gals humping their way through New York City between 1998 and 2004 with two - and a rumored third - movies to follow. Yes. Yes. THIS was . . . you remember now . . . the "end" of sex and relationships as we knew it. Want to know what happened thanks to Sex and the City? NOTHING.

Fact check - three things happened . . .

  • Sarah Jessica Parker (who was carefully costumed for every scene of that show) was somehow seen as a fashion icon
  • Well over one million women bought (or had bought for them) a rabbit 
  • The martini was bastardized beyond all recognition 
Know what did NOT happen? Anything else - and nothing as relates to sexual balance in this great country of ours.

We Americans are an UPTIGHT group of people when it comes to sex. I get that. I think that generations will pass and we'll get less and less reserved for the sake of being reserved and we'll blame divinity for less and less of our hang ups. 

I'm not saying we'll all eventually bind, spank, and "punish" our lovers (that is a very particular type of sexual enjoyment not everyone would even want) or that we will all eventually own rabbits (there are thousands of more innovative toys on the market today (and the internet allows you to get them in relative anonymity) if you know where your lady spot(s) are) but I am saying we might eventually get to a point where a movie can come out that doesn't require protests because some of the ideas in them are controversial. I'm looking at YOU, American Sniper.