Movies: Fifty Shades Freed, The 15:17 To Paris, Permission

I couldn’t make the one screening offered for the 3rd and hopefully final offering of the s&m-light franchise “50  Shades” but it gets just 7%  from Rotten Tomatoes. About the best thing that’s being said about this 2 hours long R-rated movie is that “50  Shades Freed” has some INTENTIONAL laughs this time. Keep in mind the original “50 Shades of Gray” won 5 Golden Raspberry awards for the worst movie and worst acting of the year and the sequel this year is also a big nominee. I just worry a 4th movie is possible- since yet another book was recently released- this time from HIS point of view. BTW- star Dakota Johnson, daughter of Melanie Griffith &  Don Johnson, is currently dating Coldplay’s Chris Martin, the consciously uncoupled ex of Gwyneth Paltrow. Now THERE’S a movie !!!


I LOVE Clint Eastwood movies- he’s won Oscars for  best picture and best director twice. I LOVED “Million Dollar Baby”. I loved “Letters From Iowa Jima”. Ditto “Gran Torino” & “American Sniper”. Which is why I was positively shocked by how much I HATED “The 15:17 to Paris”- based on the true story of the 3 American heroes who 2-and-a-half years ago stopped a terror attack on a train from Amsterdam to Paris. Part of the problem was  Eastwood hired the heroes to play themselves in his movie. They’re heroes. They’re not actors!!  But the writing was so bad, even real life actors Judy Greer and Jenna Fischer seemed stiff. This was one of the worst movies I’ve seen in years. I hate to say it. The heroes deserve a better film. 87 year old Clint Eastwood calls this film an experiment.  I guess it’s admirable to try something different. BTW, Rotten Tomatoes gives it 10%.


½ star


You can listen to my interview with "Permission" star Rebecca Hall and writer/director Brian Crano on my podcast “Sonstein Sessions” on the iHeart Radio app.

Rebecca Hall and “Downton Abbey’s” Dan Stevens play two wealthy Brooklyn millennials who are each other’s firsts: first kisses; first loves; first everythings. When challenged at a drunken dinner on how they really know if they are right for each other, since they “know” no others, they decide to sleep with others. A subplot involves her gay brother who lives with his love- as they struggle with whether to become parents.  Gina Gershon also stars, adding comic relief. You know from the beginning how this one ends.   The only mystery for me was how all these people could afford these ridiculously lavish apartments and homes in Brooklyn.  


2 stars

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