Civic groups yesterday criticized the movie Fifty Shades of Grey, saying it promoted the wrong attitudes toward sex, encouraged domestic violence and skewed perceptions of the sexuality of women.
The protagonist of the film, Christian Grey, is the son of a drug-addicted prostitute who grew up abused by his mother’s “clients,” which led to him developing a predilection for bondage, sadism and masochism (BDSM) as a defense mechanism, Alliance of Religious Groups for the Love of Families Taiwan secretary-general Chang Shou-yi (張守一) said at a press conference in Taipei.
The film is saturated with sexual sadism, which is not a normal or safe sexual practice, Chang said.
If people who watch the film are unaware of this and are persuaded the sexual acts portrayed in the film are normal, it would greatly disrupt society and cause women to be viewed in an inappropriate light, he said.
A complete attitude toward sexual relations must take into account the satisfaction not only of the physical aspect, but also the psychological and ethical, with true climax being the conclusion to an act in which participants are completely immersed physically, mentally and spiritually, Chang said, adding that each participant should also take into consideration love, attitude toward the other and patience.
Chang said he was most worried about the possibility of moviegoers coming away with a skewed perception of the female gender, adding that women should not be wrongly treated or regarded with the wrong mindset, especially as the nation has passed the Gender Equality Education Act (性別平等教育法).
Chinese Regional Bishops’ Conference secretary-general Chen Ko (陳科) said that as money was comparatively hard to come by for young people, and the movie did not really offer a great depth of English vocabulary, it was not really worth the price of a ticket.
If young people have time and money, they should spend it at events more worthwhile, such as book exhibitions, comic shows, learning how to engage in a proper relationship or learning about finances, Chen said, adding that if young people are misled by movies such as this, they would not be able to have a happy or fulfilling sex life when they grow older.
The movie is bad because it stresses the wrong values, such as the pain of masochism equating to pleasure, Chinese Confucius and Mencius Association director Chang Chung-ho (張中和) said, adding that he is afraid that the nation might be hit by a wave of abuse and violence after people watch the movie.
Students from the Protection of Family Values organization said the movie was carrying an embedded message encouraging domestic violence, adding that the film abounded with male dominance and sexual bullying.
According to Hsiao Lin (小林), spokesman of the BDSM Company, the nation’s first open BDSM group, many of the BDSM scenes portrayed in the movie were not consistent with real practice.
The most important aspect of BDSM is that the submissive partner’s safety and feelings must be guaranteed, Hsiao Lin said, adding that it was a difficult boundary to set and one which many BDSM practitioners are still trying to place.