Before I get started with my review, I just want to state I didn't like the movie, "365 Days" on Netflix. The plot, the characters, the actors, everything. The only good thing about this movie, in my opinion, was the scenery. But, of course, you probably already guessed I didn't like the movie based upon the title, so let's get into it.
Mainstream media keeps on trying to correlate dominance and abuse. Dominance equals total control in every aspect of your life. Of course, if someone chooses to engage in that type of relationship where they are seeking out a more dominant and (appropriately) controlling partner, that is totally OK. This movie, however, perpetuates the stereotype of what dominance is in a relationship, and this cycle in the media is extremely toxic.
Dubbed the "Italian Fifty Shades of Grey," "365 Days" is based on the novel by Blanka Lipińska. The movie follows Laura and Massimo. Laura is kidnapped by Massimo, who happens to be involved in the Sicilian Mafia. Massimo tells Laura that he will keep her for 365 days until she falls in love with him. Throughout the beginning of the movie, Massimo's language pits Laura as an object of attraction, someone who he should own. He takes her captive against her will and along the way, he is constantly grabbing her violently, putting his hands around her throat, and throwing her around. He even ties Laura up, against her will, to show her what she is, "missing," with another woman.
Pretty soon after this turnaround, Laura falls in love with Massimo. It is discovered that when they decide to get married, they have only known each other for two months.
The problem I have with this movie isn't the dominatrix relationship that presents itself between Laura and Massimo. The problem is that the movie presents as if any man deemed powerful, handsome, and wealthy can get whatever they want, no matter how toxic the relationship is. The manipulation, violence, and mistreatment of Laura doesn't represent itself even as a consenting relationship between two adults.
It's like the same crap, different story as was "Fifty Shades of Grey." Christian continuously perpetrated toxic qualities and violence against Anastasia and people ate it up. People look to these relationships as if they are what a healthy domineering relationship should be. The character, Christian, even admitted he was a sadist, seeking out women to be submissive to him that looked like his deceased mother so he can physically hurt them.
If you think about it this way, "365 Days" is essentially about a girl who is kidnapped by a psychotic, murderous, self-centered mafia boss, held against her will, and forced to fall in love with her kidnapper. This movie could very well be the definition of Stockholm syndrome. But of course, the man is handsome and wealthy, so it doesn't matter, right?
Some may say I'm being overdramatic. The point I am trying to make is when the media puts out garbage that goes against every rule of consent, there will always be people who will imitate. I mean, there were even people who tried lighting themselves on fire to imitate "Jackass" stunts, despite a harsh warning at the beginning of every movie and episode.
Of course, not everyone is going to watch these movies and want to imitate. It is entertainment, after all, and there has to be an audience for these types of books and movies or they wouldn't be selling or getting views. No one is making you watch it, but, nonetheless, it is putting out into the world a toxic message that, as long as the man is rich, handsome, and powerful, who cares what you have to go through? Who cares how you are treated?
Next time you want to watch a steamy movie, try and find one that is based around consent. Violence against women shouldn't be considered entertainment anymore because it's "hot." This form of entertainment is toxic.
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