+++ Opinion +++
365 Days 2 is a bad movie . I’ve already explained that in several places on FILMSTARTS, which is why I’ll save myself a comprehensive discussion at this point (curious people take a look at my review ). In this article, I want to dive into one aspect of the film that I haven’t covered sufficiently: Netflix ‘s cowardly handling of the questionable legacy of its predecessor, 365 Days .
The streaming service faced a major dilemma in the production of “365 Days 2”. On the one hand, the first part, which was produced without Netflix involvement and was only later purchased by the provider, was extremely successful. From a financial point of view, there was probably no question of not doing a sequel. On the other hand, the erotic thriller has also caused a fierce controversy about the erotic-romantic transfiguration of violence against women. Since Netflix attaches great importance to being seen as liberal and progressive, the content of «365 Days» clashes with the company’s image. So what to do?
Netflix chose the path of least resistance and had a weakened version of the novel shot , in which the protagonist Laura ( Anna Maria Sieklucka ) is allowed to pretend to be a self-determined woman. The fact that this balancing act is not even remotely convincing is proven by a stupid dialogue that takes place between Laura and Massimo ( Michele Morrone ) about half an hour into the film .
Laura sums up the Netflix hypocrisy perfectly
In the scene, Laura talks to Massimo about wanting more freedom and independence in the relationship. She doesn’t realize how ironic it is to make such demands on the man who once deliberately robbed her of her freedom and independence. The conversation is a little longer, but can basically be broken down into the following two sentences uttered by Laura:
«You kidnapped me and that’s sick. But I fell in love with you and we’re together because I want it that way.»
It was clear to me at the very latest when the first sentence of the film was «I’m not wearing any panties» that in «365 Days 2» there would be no polished battles of words like Aaron Sorkin or Quentin Tarantino awaiting me. But the above lines of dialogue still undercut my expectations. I just couldn’t believe how clumsily the Netflix sequel swept the elephant in the room under the rug. Too bad that a carpet is the worst possible place to hide an elephant…
«365 Days 3» on Netflix: The sequel to the erotic thriller is so violent – and it could be released as soon as possible
With minimal effort, the predecessor is condemned in those two sentences and at the same time it is made clear that everything is different now and that Laura is wearing the pants in the relationship. Laura’s change of heart comes out of nowhere, and alpha macho Massimo comes across as oddly submissive in this conversation, which isn’t at all in keeping with his previously established nature.
However, neither Laura nor anyone else in the film has anything to add to the fact that a woman has fallen in love (!) with her kidnapper and is even marrying him (!!). If Netflix had wanted to make a serious statement against its predecessor, this point should have been dealt with much better.
A half-hearted sequel
Of course, significant changes to the original novel would have been necessary for this, but the streaming service also made them elsewhere: The book “365 Days: This Day” remains true to the theme of its predecessor, with Laura telling Nacho against her will drugged, kidnapped and held captive. In the Netflix adaptation , on the other hand, it is the woman who consciously chooses to run off with Massimo’s rival. That’s enough to make the film less scandalous and suggest improvement — but it’s not particularly brave.
«365 Days 2» is only defused on Netflix: the erotic story in the book template is so much more blatant
Netflix is reluctant to faithfully adapt the novel’s story, but it also doesn’t have the guts to truly critically reflect on the source material. On the one hand, the provider wants to avoid image damage, but on the other hand, he doesn’t want to scare away the fans of the predecessor.
But if «365 Days» is really so morally reprehensible that the sequel had to be rewritten in order to conform with the company’s ideals, wouldn’t it have been more logical to completely do without the film, whose success is only due to the problematic content of the film anyway First based?
Of course, companies usually take the path from which those responsible hope to make the most money, and from the streaming provider’s point of view it was probably the most lucrative middle ground to deal with the brand. But it’s precisely this half-heartedness that makes «365 Days 2» drip with hypocrisy — even if that’s far from the biggest problem of the Netflix hit.
Fortunately, there are still good erotic films. Colleague Daniel recently presented one of them:
Forget «365 Days» & «365 Days 2» on Netflix: This erotic thriller shows how it’s done!