Move over [Fifty Shades of Grey](movie:391697), there's a new valentine's movie in town and it's a whole lot more virtuous than Mr. Grey's scandalous exploits, or at least it thinks it is. Rik Swartzwelder has directed, written and starred in the Christian romance drama Old Fashioned, a film he says is clearly "picking a fight with Fifty Shades."
In his introduction to the film's trailer Swartzwelder gives some background on the film and explains the reason why it is so important to have a film like Old Fashioned as an alternative when the world is going so crazy for the scandalous "cultural juggernaut" that is Fifty Shades of Grey:
Clearly, we’re picking a fight with Fifty Shades. We’re not only picking a fight, we’re picking a fight with the schoolground bully, likely to get our nose busted in two. … Love and romance are created by God and designed to lead to marriage and physical intimacy. … I find it impossible to not believe that, deep down, we don’t want to celebrate something more than Fifty Shades.
Them's fightin' words, Rik! But despite the filmmakers rigid anti-Fifty Shades stance, I don't really think the vitriol toward the film is particularly warranted.
Old Fashioned may be a movie about love and romance, but isn't that also exactly what Fifty Shades is about, too? Yes, there are obviously some spicy scenes involving Christian Grey's fetish for BDSM, and that is a big part of why people read the book and will go see the movie. However, while those salacious scenes may hook readers and viewers in, they aren't the reason people have embraced it as a cultural phenomenon, the romance is.
It actually seems totally unfortunate that Old Fashioned has chosen to take up the anti-Fifty Shades brigade, because the movie actually looks pretty good! The storyline, although a well-worn concept for romance film, has an interesting twist with the religion aspect, and the characters seem multi-layered and relatable. In fact, Old Fashioned seems like a movie that could do pretty well off its own steam, without any mention Fifty Shades of Grey at all. Check out the trailer highlights:
We're introduced to former frat-boy, Clay, who is strongly anti-dating
Until he mets his cute and sassy new neighbor, Amber
But they have vastly different thoughts on religion..and many other things in life
So they both learn from each other
And ultimately it looks like love conquers all
I don't know about you, but this film looks just as good as most other romance dramas that are released- Fifty Shades of Grey included! This whole "anti-Fifty Shades" stance that Rik Swartzwelder has chosen to go with just seems like a blatant grab for free publicity, which is a shame really, because his film is better than that.
Check out the whole trailer here, including the foreword from writer, director, and lead star, Rik Swartzwelder:
Does Old Fashioned sound good to you?