Netflix’s 365 Days dropped on the subscription streamer earlier this month and has rapidly grown popular on the site. Though the film is Polish and features a mafia war, it has drawn a lot of comparisons to the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise due to the erotic nature of the film. However, if you were to ask the Director of Photography on the movie, Bartek Cierlica, the movie offers far more than that.
When asked how he feels about the movie being referred to as “rich porn,” Bartek Cierlica talked to Variety a little bit more about the goal of 365 Days, which follows a story of a young woman who is kidnapped by a crime lord and has 365 days to fall for him. He did say the movie was going for the Fifty Shades vibe, but it also wants to offer something different to viewers.
Rich porn, you say? I don’t know if to feel offended or flattered. The film and the erotic book written by Blanka Lipinska it is based on is a kind of fairytale for adult women and a modern interpretation of Beauty and the Beast story. The story is in some ways close to Fifty Shades of Grey. They are both based on the same motif — a handsome and rich man who opens the door to new life and sensual experiences for the female hero. But in 365 Days the female hero is far stronger and more emancipated than the girls from old fairy tales.
Interestingly, the first Fifty Shades of Grey film also some vibes similar to 365 Days. There are the obvious power dynamics between the two main characters, Laura and Massimo in the new Netflix movie and Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey in the other popular franchise. Then there are the fairytale Beauty and the Beast comparisons, versus the small Alice in Wonderland nods with Ana’s “eat me, drink me” moment when hungover in the first flick in that franchise. Finally, and most obviously, there are BDSM moments in both of these properties.
Throw in beautiful locations and intimate moments and it’s very easy to make a comparison between 365 Days and Fifty Shades of Grey. According to Bartek Cierlica, even the trajectory of a relationship that is initially meant to be more about control and later cedes into love is similar to what that other popular franchise brought us, so it’s easy to see why it’s the #1 project on Netflix right now. He noted:
Each sex scene in this movie is different. The relationship evolves. It starts with fear of the unknown and temptation. It evolves through pure sex with BDSM and ends with love.
Having said this, I do like that, as noted, Laura is a different personality type from Anastasia Steele and the story in the Netflix movie is wholly different in terms of its settings, tone and its ending in particular (no spoilers!). Like Fifty Shades, though, it’s looking like 365 DNI (days in Polish) may be getting a sequel and would then become a franchise for the streamer, at least according to rumors online.