Fifty Shades Freed is a 2018 American erotic romantic drama film that was directed by James Foley and written by Niall Leonard, and is based on the novel of the same name by E. L. James. It is the third and final installment of the Fifty Shades film series, following Fifty Shades of Grey from 2015 and Fifty Shades Darker from 2017. The film stars Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan as Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey, respectively, and follows the couple as they marry, and must deal with Ana’s former boss (played by Eric Johnson), who begins to stalk them.
Principal photography on Fifty Shades Freed began simultaneously with Darker in February 2016, in Paris and Vancouver. The film was released in the United States on February 9, 2018, including a limited IMAX release. It has grossed $368 million worldwide, making it the 5th highest-grossing film of 2018, and, like its two predecessors, received negative reviews from film critics, with heavy criticism aimed at its screenplay and performances.
The Film Itself (2/5):
I want to preface this with the fact that my wife and I watched the unrated version of Fifty Shades Freed and this review is based on that specific version of the film. I have yet to watch the theatrical version, so there will be no comparisons to that. That said, with this film, we’re given the third, and absolutely final adaptation from this erotic drama (trauma?) trilogy that boasts and digs into the typical fantasy that a lot of people secretly have. The one thing that I can admit is that with the various pieces that involved the man that was stalking the couple, I found those parts to be enjoyable, and very much like a drawn out episode of Criminal Minds or another show of that sort. However, the entire subplot to this film really is one that didn’t need to be made into film, and should have really been left up to the imaginations of those who read James’ novelization.
Picture Quality (4/5):
For being an upscaled 4K UHD release, Fifty Shades Freed looked pretty damn good as it played out across my living room television. While it doesn’t necessarily have too much focus directed toward the fake 2160p resolution, the overall utilization of HDR throughout the film did a really nice job at making everything appear smoother and much more lifelike. You could definitely see every nook and cranny of the film, including the pores on Dakota Johnson’s skin, especially during those close up shots in her seductive moments.
Audio Quality (5/5):
Packaged with a DTS:X audio track, Fifty Shades Freed really does a fantastic job at offering a powerful delivery for its viewers that are able to make use of the technology behind the track. While a good portion of the movie are the more sexualized sequences being played out, those scenes involving their stalker and the tense moments that were attributed to that part of the story really hit hard and made them stand out more than any other parts of the film. Dialogue was clean and clear and everyone was able to be heard and understood without having to adjust the volume levels at all, and the bass track that accompanied the more strenuous sequences did a great job at relaying themselves as my living room floor rumbled along.
The Packaging (3/5):
The 4K UHD release of Fifty Shades Freed comes packaged in your standard two-disc UHD amaray case. Within that case is the standard 4K UHD copy of the film as well as the standard Blu-ray copy of the film. The UHD disc does feature the same piece of artwork that’s been provided on the case art while the included Blu-ray copy only bears the standard release text and generic background. There are no DVD copies included with this release; however, a digital copy redemption pamphlet has been included for the available streaming options. A slipcover has been made available as well during the original pressing of the release that features the same piece of artwork that’s available on the case art.
Special Features (4/5):
I was genuinely surprised because the UHD release of Fifty Shades Freed actually includes the same exact special features that are provided on the Blu-ray disc on the UHD disc, but at 4K resolution too! The content that’s been provided not only offers a small expanded view into the storyline that’s been attributed to this film, but a decent look into some of the work that went into making this film happen. Included with this release is:
- Deleted Scene
- The Final Climax: 30+ Minutes, Behind-The-Scenes Featurette
- Christian & Ana By Jamie & Dakota
- An Intimate Conversation With E. L. James & Eric Johnson
- Music Videos
Codec: HEVC / H.265
Resolution: Upscaled 4K (2160p)
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Original Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
French (Canada): DTS 5.1
Spanish: DTS-HD HR 7.1
English SDH, French, Spanish
1 Movie, 2 Cuts – 105 minutes
If it weren’t for the various dramatic sequences that played out in Fifty Shades Freed, I can honestly say that I would have had a horrible time with this movie. The inclusion of that aspect into this story at least made it semi-enjoyable; but then again, I’m not someone who’s trying to live out their sexual fantasies through the novelization of a fictional series. The visual presentation of the UHD looked really nice, and had a fantastic use of the HDR boost. The audio experience that was provided was absolutely stellar. If you’re considering grabbing this release for your collection, I can only recommend grabbing it if you have the first two films in your collection. Fifty Shades Freed will be available on 4K UHD, Blu-ray and DVD beginning on Tuesday, May 8, 2018.
Note: This Blu-ray was sent to us for review. This has not affected our judgement or editorial process in any way. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this process.