Fifty Shades of Grey: 4 Changes From the Book That Made the Movie Better
Fifty Shades of Grey has opened, finally indulging the millions of readers who have been envisioning how the story of Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele would play out on the big screen. As is the case with many adaptations, not everything from the book made it into the movie, and certain stylistic choices had to be made. With Fifty Shades, author E L James and director Sam Taylor-Johnson cut out a few things — and most of these changes are emphatically for the better. If you're curious about what's different and why it works so well, here are the four biggest differences.
It's Not From Ana's Perspective
The book is told from the first-person perspective of Anastasia, and while the movie certainly shows you the story through her eyes, there is no voice-over, a cinematic device that many films have used to give the same first-person perspective as a book. This is a good thing because it saves us from many of Ana's inane thoughts that clouded up the book — namely how often she talks about how hot Christian is, or the many expressions Ana is fond of using (it's not really believable to have a grown woman say "Jeez," "Wow," and "Holy cow" over and over again).
There's No "Inner Goddess"
This is probably the best thing to get dumped by the big-screen translation. In the book, Ana seems incapable of expressing her desires or describing her libido, instead calling it her "inner goddess." Mostly her inner goddess does a lot of different dances, depending on Ana's level of sexual excitement, which gives readers an extremely weird mental picture. Thankfully, there is no mention of Ana's inner goddess in the movie — though her roommate, Kate, does call Ana a goddess once as a compliment.
Way Less José
José (played by Victor Rasuk in the movie) is a much bigger character in the book than he is in the movie, and it works better. While he's present for a few key scenes — like as Christian's photographer and the time he tries to drunkenly kiss Ana — we don't see him much after the latter scene. In the book, there's more made of his feelings for Ana and his status as a romantic rival for Christian, but there's no rumblings of this in the film. It's for the best, because the central relationship is already complicated enough; throwing in a love triangle would have been unnecessary.
The Tampon Scene
Maybe you read about how the infamous tampon scene would not be in the movie a month ago, but either way, it's a relief to not have to see this scene in the theater. In fact, don't look for it in the inevitable director's cut of the film, either. Sam Taylor-Johnson told Variety, "It was never even discussed."