Fifty Shades of Grey was so flavorless and forgettable that I actually had to go back and look at my review to see what I thought of it. (SPOILER ALERT: I didn’t like it.) In that regard, Fifty Shades Darker is a very faithful sequel; a milquetoast continuation of a bland romance between two boring people for whom everything always seems to work out. The film goes on long enough that you begin to understand what it feels like to be punished by a self-described sadist like Christian Grey.
In Fifty Shades of Grey, Jamie Dornan’s Christian Grey alludes to his former lover / sex buddy Elena Lincoln, who basically serves as his very own Mrs. Robinson — the two had an affair when Christian was just 15 years old, as if his whole situation couldn’t get any more skeevy. Today comes news that Universal has found its Ms. Lincoln in Kim Basinger, a fitting choice for the role of the seductive, experienced and confident character who will throw a wrench in Christian’s relationship with Ana.