"Fifty Shades Darker" presents itself to the audience as nothing more than a cheap dime store novel and lives up to that low expectation. The film provides little to no substance and plot holes that a Mack semi truck could drive through.

However, that is not the saddest part about this movie. Like is predecessor “Fifty Shades of Grey” it confuses love with domestic violence. It paints a picture that love is about control, power, and influence over others. Love is not about that at all. It's about friendship, respect and picking each other up during the during the difficult times life throws at you. Not whips, chains and power.

"Fifty Shades Darker" brings that audience back into the world of Billionaire Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) and the person that has become his obsession, Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson). Since breaking up, Grey has been unable to get over not having Steele in his life.

He is finally able to track her down at a photography exhibit where he convinces Steele to have dinner with him to work things out. Reluctantly, Steele agrees.

While at dinner, Steele decides to take Grey back on the condition that he treats her like a person and not an object of his obsession. Grey struggles but works through his sexual demons while Steele has to look past the women who came before her.

Pardon the pun here, but Grey is a very dark character that has a lot of issues that make him violent. He is the type of person that I would caution any sane person to stay away from.

Grey looks to control every aspect of the life of the person he is involved with romantically. From showing up unexpectedly at places where Steele works to purchasing the company Steele works for or even by restricting whom Steele interacts with and giving her commands — again, this does not sound like love.

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline’s website, there are several warning signs that might indicate a person is in an abusive relationship. Some of this signs include telling a person that they can never do anything right, showing jealousy of your friends and time spent away, keeping you or discouraging you from seeing friends or family members, controlling whom you see, where you go, or what you do and preventing you from making your own decisions.

People who tell themselves that they are going to see “Fifty Shades Darker” for the heart-warming love story are lying. The story of this film is sloppy. Watching the scenes unfold on camera felt like putting a puzzle together without the box and with some of the pieces missing. The end product just does not look right.

In all total, there are about 30 minutes of story here out of the 118 minutes of run time. The sex scenes between Grey and Steele make up the majority of the movie, and those scenes just come off as awkward at best — so don’t lie to yourself in how you justify seeing this movie. Be like some of the people that were in the theater with me, they wanted to see sex, and they expressed that desire very loudly at times. One such time I overheard a fellow audience member say to her girlfriend, “I bet you could bounce a quarter off of his butt.”

Honesty I can respect. Lying I cannot.

All in all, “Fifty Shades Darker” is a poorly made movie that is made to capitalize on lust, not love. Hollywood needs to ask my grandparents, whom I consider experts on the topic, about true love. They have been married for 71 years and are still growing strong. I would be happy to provide the directors with their number if they choose to give me a call.

I give “Fifty Shades Darker" one-half mustache out of five.

This film is rated R for strong erotic sexual content, some graphic nudity, and language.

For people who are in an abusive relationship, the staff at the National Domestic Violence Hotline can be reached at 1-800-799-7233 or call your local police department in your area. For additional information go its website at www.thehotline.org.

----

Follow Andrew on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AndrewBrancaWDL or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/AndrewBrancaWNI. Contact him at andrew.branca@waxahachietx.com or 469-517-1451.