The blockbuster mom-porn franchise Fifty Shades of Grey debuts its Hollywood movie version this weekend, moving the needle of public discussion of BDSM. So SFist sought out 50 accomplished pornographers, porn stars, sex-positive activists, authors, educators and professional polyamorists to weigh in with their thoughts on the shambolically written kink tome that has sold more than 100 million copies.

It should be noted that most of these people had not seen the movie version of Fifty Shades of Grey, as my request for 50 press passes and a private IMAX screening was rudely denied. Instead, we have 50 different bullet-point critiques of Fifty Shades from people who’ve made a career of teaching, practicing or promoting the kinky arts, to present this hardcore orgy of literary and cultural analyses on E.L. James’ Fifty Shades of Grey franchise.

Warning: Many of these links are NSFW.

The Bondage-a-Go-Go partners and owners
“For the responsible fetishist, BDSM is about risk awareness and consent. Fifty Shades ignores these critically important aspects of the lifestyle in favor of glamorizing rape and predatory behavior.”

Violet Blue, bestselling sex author and “Oprah’s porn pundit”
“It's not a BDSM novel. It's 'The Ultimate Guide' to revoking all the hard work sex-positive sex educators have done over the past 30 years to create a culture of informed consent around kink and keep people from sticking household objects in their butts. It's not a romance. It's a book about a rapey douchebag with borderline personality disorder who obsesses over an invertebrate whose insecurity should win her a Darwin Award.”

Midori, artist and columnist
“The conversations about this, regardless of the quality of the book, are serving to destigmatize variations of consensual sex. I cringe at the mediocre product, but I smile at its bigger aspirations.”

Jiz Lee, Genderqueer porn performer
“I hope the ‘silver’ lining is that it incites a curiosity for people to learn more about BDSM -- through workshops, educational materials, and by getting proper information from skilled instructors.”

Carol Queen, writer, speaker, activist, Center for Sex and Culture
Marriage 2.0 is the movie Fifty Shades wants to be but can't.”

Peter Acworth, founder,
“Not enough sex. More tits and ass please.”

Polly Superstar, author, founder Kinky Salon
“The idea of kinky sex getting more mainstream airtime is great. It's just a pity the story does a terrible job of explaining the difference between abuse and BDSM. As a fantasy it's clearly touching a nerve in our culture, judging by its overwhelming appeal, but it doesn't model healthy relationships.”

Annie Sprinkle, artist and sexologist
Fifty Shades of Grey? Been there done that decades ago. Green is the new grey! Bring on 50 shades of spring! Ecosex is the new grey!”

Lisa Vandever, director, Cinekink: The Kinky Film Festival
“If more dom males are inspired to sport Italian suits and offer up gazillion-thread count sheets, I’m good with that!”

Tracy Clark-Flory, Staff Writer, sex and relationships,
“The Fifty Shades movie could not be more clueless about consent, which makes it exactly the sex movie that America deserves.”

Lorelei Lee, performer/director,
“Fifty Shades of Meh.”

Danarama, Kink University
“For all Fifty Shades of Grey lacks in BDSM authenticity and consent, it makes up for in its numerous 'teachable moments' that will let sex educators help kink-curious people, with workshops like the symposium.”

Sunny Megatron, host of Showtime original series ‘Sex with Sunny Megatron’
“It’s a guilty pleasure. Many of us who are fully aware of all of the negative aspects of Fifty Shades love it anyway. We know the sex is unrealistic (Simultaneous orgasms every time? Please!), the relationship unhealthy (No, you can’t change your manipulative partner!), and their lifestyle is unrealistically lavish (Charlie Tango, anyone?) but that's exactly why millions can't get enough of it. It’s the ultimate, unattainable fantasy.”

Siouxsie Q - author and podcaster, The Whore Next Door
“I really wish E.L. James had gone with her original concept: an erotic Twilight fan fiction. The stories would be so much more entertaining with werewolves and vampires.”

Mr. Santa Clara County Leather 2014
“The movie was better than I expected… I was surprised about the amount of spontaneous laughing that occurred from the audience.”

Diana Heideman, Ms. Santa Clara County Leather 2014
“I find Fifty Shades very problematic on many levels. Gray is not a 'Dominant' in any sense of the word -- he's an emotionally and physically abusive bully. He stalks her, threatens her with punishment, and even carries through with it, before she has ever signed the ‘contract’ with him.”

Eve Minax, dominatrix, author, and kink educator
“I liken FSG to a Harlequin Romance of which I have read many, and I can assure you they are all over the top fantasy porn with a domineering male and somewhat saucy although always submissive female. I’m not sure it will create more community or that it will even be close to helping BDSM become more mainstream. On another note, there are stats saying that sex toy injuries have risen since its publication.”.

Philippe Lewis, sex and intimacy coach, founder Club Exotica
“We think of consent as binary, but we already know that a ‘yes’ can quickly change to a ‘no’ and then back to a ‘yes’ in a matter of minutes or seconds. Indeed, ‘yes’ comes in many shades we can taste and feel and experience with our body.”

Scott "Bigred" Ferrell, Mr. San Francisco Leather 2014
"Fifty Shades of Grey is a shameful, and terrible misrepresentation of how BDSM is practiced in the real world."

Dr. Susan Block, sex therapist, TV host, author of The Bonobo Way
“As a sex therapist, I give a thumbs-up to anything that gets my clients — and millions of regular people around the world — excited about sex, desire, masturbating, communicating, reigniting moribund marital love lives, exploring sex toys, fetish and fantasy roleplay. There's no doubt that Fifty Shades has accomplished an important feat in the world of erotica, whether or not its fans read all those crappy words. And I tip my hat to that. Just please don’t make me read it again!”

Mike Stabile, activist and filmmaker, Eros Media
Fifty Shades is nothing compared to the ball-gags being put on adult performers by the government these days. Talk about non-consent!”

Katie Lee, editor, Eros Media
“I really hope that the awareness around Fifty Shades helps defeat the new UK legislation that prohibits caning in adult entertainment — the movie couldn't have been shot there.”

Tomcat, director,
“Believing Fifty Shades is an actual BDSM experience, is like believing Star Trek is actual space travel.”

Chelsea Poe, AVN-nominated queer porn performer, writer, director
“I think Fifty Shades paints BDSM in an overtly simplistic hetero way that is more about a abusive relationship than anything really about BDSM.”

Lola, trans-woman sex worker, educator, coach
“Given the climate now, and looking at the sexual landscape (think college assaults, and so forth) it really does seem to me that one thing we need to do is really develop the idea of consent not just as some passing fancy that adults do in a dungeon, but as something we can all learn as children, so we can all grasp how important it is to do more than just say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ but to have a two way agreement and stick to it.”

Cleo Dubois, BDSM coach
“It is the same old archetypal faerie tale of the Dark Lord and the naive virgin prrincess. It reinforces the cliché of unhealthy manipulative erotic power play. It is really not about BDSM."

Reid Mihalko,
“The book is riddled with unhealthy, non-consensual, co-dependent, classist, and chauvinistic bad behavior. Fifty Shades of Grey is no more a manual for healthy BDSM than Romeo and Juliet is a dating guide.”

Kitty Stryker, queer femme model and blogger
Fifty Shades of Grey's popularity is actually not in spite of but due to its heteronormativity, its classism, its whiteness, and its romanticised abusive dynamic. It's reflective of years of subconscious training of women that admitting sexual desire is shameful and being ‘taken’ allows you to avoid the blame, that the ideal partner is one who ‘just knows what’s best for you’, that ‘I’m yours, forever’ is a romantic thing to say and not a terrifying admission of codependency”

Jamie DeWolf, host, Erotic Short Film Competition and Tourettes Without Regrets
“It’s a capitalist fantasy. You find this virgin, unchartered territory to exploit and you plant your flag in it.”

Stefanos & Shay, educators and 2014 International Power Exchange title holders
Fifty Shades of Grey is fantasy and fiction, not a ‘how-to’ guide. The relationship portrayed in Fifty Shades is abusive and not any sort of model for healthy romance. You wouldn't learn to drive by playing Grand Theft Auto, and you shouldn't learn BDSM by watching Fifty Shades.”

Diane Duke, CEO, Free Speech Coalition, (adult industry trade group)
“Whatever your opinion of the films and books, the Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon is being treated as if it were the final victory over prudish sex censors. But the real answer is a bit more complicated.”

Jay H, sex & dating writer at Broke-Ass Stuart
“Its the Twilight of BSDM fiction. I couldn't' read past 15 pages without gouging my eyes out from the inanity. The only Mr. Gray/Submissive worth watching is Spader/Gyllenhal.”

Pepper Mint, co-organizer of Threshold
“If you are new to kink, the main thing to understand about Fifty Shades is that the sex in it is deeply amateur. Right now, a diverse array of deviants near you are having kinky sex that is hotter, edgier, and more intimate while still being safer and more respectful for everyone involved. This could be you! After you've wiped down from that spontaneous paddles-and-tampons movie theater orgy, contact your local BDSM community to get a taste of the darker side of eroticism.”

Kelly Shibari, Co-director, Jessica Drake’s Guide to Wicked Sex: Plus Size, first-ever plus-size Penthouse Forum cover girl
“I'm thrilled the book has inspired vanilla readers to consider spicing things up, I hope it also inspires those people to do their due diligence before whipping out that riding crop.”

Ned Would, porn star and physicist
“I find it extremely disturbing that America is more comfortable with women jerking off to stories about forced psychological and physical control by domineering rich men than to stories about any form of actual sex (which is nearly absent in Fifty Shades).”

Marcia Baczynski, sex educator and communication expert
“A film like Fifty Shades can be many things to many people: inspiration, a hot topic of conversation, something to eat popcorn to on a Saturday night, or a terrifying sign of our overall cultural decline and imminent doom. One thing it isn't is education. If Fifty Shades turns you on and you want to try some sexy power play or kink, take some time to learn how to do it safely from some of the many educators out there.”

Charlie Glickman, sex and relationship coach
“While Fifty Shades of Grey has clearly tapped into a lot of people's fantasies about kink, I have to admit that I have concerns about folks copying what they see in the film. Learning to have sex from a movie like this would be like learning to drive from watching an action film: someone is probably going to get hurt.”

Dixie De La Tour, founder, Bawdy Storytelling
“I'm pretty thrilled with the whole Fifty Shades thing. I had an experience on an airplane with a totally vanilla woman who was discovering kink through the books. She'd bought all 3 of em at the airport and was so into it!”

Sinclair Sexsmith, feminist dominant and sex educator
“I was so bored by this book. I didn't learn anything from Christian Grey, and his character arc is trite. His dominance is all sourced from his childhood abuse rather than coming from any place of personal inner power or strength. Dominance that comes from skill, knowledge, kindness, and thoughtfulness—now that's the kind of dominance I want to read about.”

Rachel Lark, XXX ukelele songstress
“Just like with the lesbians in the 1983 film The Hunger, it's not clear if we should be stoked that we finally see some of our own on the big screen or a bit unsettled that we're being portrayed as monsters. But hey, at least we can use the word, ‘Greydar’ now!”

Diablo, Bondage-a-Go-Go
“It is undeniable that Fifty Shades is a cultural phenomenon and some way is a metaphor for the dynamics between rich and poor. Simultaneously it also demonstrates how easily BDSM can be hijacked by abusers, especially without exposure to a healthy vibrant kink and sex positive community.”

Ms. Sober Leather 2015 and the Treasurer of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, Northern California Chapter
“Until Hollywood bought the rights to Fifty Shades of Grey, the biggest problem concerned the ending of the third book in the series: Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey become a vanilla couple, which amounts to several bad messages about BDSM. She tops him from the bottom in the worst way possible and is rewarded for it. Now, we've had some consolation in the fact that most people have been unable to read all the way to the end due to the legion of problems pointed out by your sources for this article. Unfortunately, movies usually enjoy much larger audiences than print today, and even if the first two installments of the trilogy bomb at the box office and the third flick in the series winds up being a ‘straight to rental’ release, millions of people will likely make it to that awful closing message of a ‘happily ever after’ meaning free of kink.”

Margaret Corvid, professional dominatrix and journalist
Fifty Shades opens the conversation about kink, but we should pretty much disregard anything it has to say after that. There are far hotter books, far hotter films, and far hotter ways to get busy — that don't violate consent and promote patriarchy.”

Tina Horn, author and, podcaster, Why are People Into That?!
“The only way the movie could ‘get it’ would be if Sam Taylor-Wood gave us an exercise in camp in the vein of Cronenberg's Crash. I'm not exactly holding my breath.”

Creatrix Tiara, writer, activist, SFBay Slutwalk co-organizer
“I wonder if some of the criticism against Fifty Shades is coming more from misogyny, because male writers do write a lot of crap too but they don't get as much scrutiny or scorn. This isn't to justify any of Fifty Shades' fuckery, but I wonder how much of it is similar to what John Green noticed about Twilight criticism - that a lot of it was directed at ‘OMG, crappy female writer.”

Wry Relationships, polyamory and sex coach
“If Fifty Shades had accurately portrayed loving BDSM relationships, the mainstream would have merely ignored it out of boredom. If the BDSM scene as a whole loved and supported Fifty Shades, it would not have attained this level of success. We wouldn't be talking about it. It would be another random book/movie on the shelf, mostly unnoticed, even by the kink community.

Caroline Carrington, Conscious Relationship & Intimacy Coach, Jewel in the Lotus
“I'm glad Fifty Shades of Grey helped bring the conversation about BDSM into the mainstream giving people permission to be curious and more self expressed in their sexuality. This story, however, is a grave misrepresentation of the world of kink that may lead people to believe BDSM is about violence and abuse as opposed to the deep of intimacy and connection available when people truly explore this powerful path.”

Cooper Beckett, author, podcaster, pegging enthusiast
Fifty Shades' quality as a book or film is almost beside the point, isn't it? What it should be seen as is a vehicle that brings the mainstream to the outskirts, to us, to ask questions, to learn. Anything that brings the question into the light, is another step out of the shadows for us.”

Lisa Rizzoli, Certified Tantra Educator, Tantra Sacred Loving
Fifty Shades of Grey idolizes dysfunctional, fairy-tale relationships and presents BDSM in a naïve, abusive manner.”

Kimber Wolfe, Kink Nerd Toys
“Christian Grey is a total noob and makes the same mistakes that a lot of very, very new people make.”.