Well, if you thought the first Fifty Shades film was true to the book, the second one is even more so. With more creative involvement from author E.L. James — her husband, Niall Leonard, wrote the screenplay — Fifty Shades Darker followed the book very closely, even borrowing exact dialogue a number of times.
However, as is always a case, there were a few key differences between the book and the movie. And no, we’re not talking about the minor stuff, like the Blackberry vs. iPhone of it all, or the fact that we don’t get to see Ana’s new car in the film. Here are a few of the more significant changes:
1. No Dr. Flynn
Christian’s psychiatrist is nowhere to be found in the film, which is a big change from the book, in which Dr. Flynn not only attended the charity ball — and even twirled Ana around on the dance floor — but he also sat down with Ana to answer any and all questions she had about Christian. The movie decided not to include their in-depth chat or even mention that there was a Dr. Flynn.
2. There’s less sex
At this point, this is to be expected. There’s a lot of sex in these books, and quite frankly, there’s a lot of sex in the movies, but they have to draw the line somewhere. Most notably, this film lacks a certain sex scene that involved ice cream, as well as the boat sex scene during Christian and Ana’s time on the water, and last but not least, the pool table sex scene. You know, if you’re keeping tabs.
3. A different opening
In the film, Christian and Ana reunite at José’s gallery show, after which he takes her to dinner and begs her forgiveness. But in the book, Christian’s quest to get Ana back began much earlier, when he sent her an email and asked if he could accompany her to José’s show in the first place. She said yes, and the two enjoyed a long car ride — followed by a long helicopter ride — where they discussed what happened at the end of their relationship.
Also missing from the movie? The alleyway kiss that happened right as they left the gallery.
4. Where’s Ethan?
In the book, Kate’s brother, Ethan, is coming into town to stay with Ana and ends up being a big part of the Leila story when he shows up on the night that Leila pulls a gun on Ana. Ana then went out and grabbed a few too many drinks with Ethan in order to process everything that had just happened. Spoiler: Christian wasn’t happy with her.
Christian’s anger is the only part that carried over into the film. By eliminating Ethan entirely, the film instead sees Ana walk through the rain by herself after nearly getting shot by Leila. She’s not drunk when she returns home, but Christian’s still not happy with her.
5. There’s no first dance auction at the ball (and more)
For readers, the charity ball was an elaborate event filled with many, many faces, including Dr. Flynn, Christian’s grandparents, and Mia’s friends. But the film focuses more on the people we’ve already met. And when it comes to plot, a key moment is missing from the event: The film does not include a first dance auction, which in the book served as Christian’s chance to spend a ridiculous amount of money bidding on a dance with Ana.
On a more intricate note, the conversation between Ana and Elena shifts in the film. When E.L. James wrote it, Elena told Ana that she had better not hurt Christian again, whereas in the film, Elena tells Ana that she can’t change Christian and that he has needs she can’t meet.
And on a general note about Elena, the film cuts her entire “blackmailed” story line.
6. There’s no house (and a different proposal)
When Christian pops the question, he does so after Ana wakes him up from one of his nightmares, after which he quickly falls back asleep. It’s not until the next morning that Ana’s even sure he meant what he said.
In the book, both parties were fully awake for the proposal, which took place during the post-Leila argument. Furthermore, Christian later took Ana to a house that he planned to buy for them.
One similarity: In both cases, Ana says yes with a keychain.
7. Kate doesn’t find out
In the book, Ana had some explaining to do when her best friend, Kate, found one of her emails to Christian about a contract negotiation, but in the film, Kate remains blissfully in the dark. Once again, movie-Kate has less of an opinion.