Fifty Shades of Grey Movies in Order: How to Watch Every Film Chronologically

By David Thompson Posted:
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey, Dakota Johnson as Anastasia "Ana" Steele, Fifty Shades of Grey logo

The Fifty Shades of Grey universe took the world by storm during the late 2010s, bringing the sensual book series to life. 

2015's Fifty Shades of Grey was made after Universal Pictures and Focus Features secured the film rights in March 2012, with author E. L. James retaining creative control.

The film series stars Dakota Johnson as Anastasia "Ana" Steele and Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey, who enter a notably sadomasochistic relationship. However,  this trilogy also involves a complicated love story.

How To Watch the Fifty Shades of Grey Movies in Chronological Order

Fifty Shades of Grey (2015)

Dakota Johnson in Fifty Shades of Grey.
Fifty Shades of Grey

Similar to the novel (released in 2011), Fifty Shades of Grey takes place in the modern day, indicating 2015, or more vaguely, the 2010s.

Fifty Shades of Grey follows 21-year-old English literature major Anastasia "Ana" Steele, who meets 27-year-old billionaire entrepreneur Christian Grey while interviewing him for her college newspaper. 

Christian takes an interest in Ana, leading to a complex relationship where he introduces her to his BDSM lifestyle. 

Despite Christian's insistence on a non-disclosure agreement and a formal contract for their interactions, Ana, initially a virgin, explores both conventional and BDSM sexual experiences with him. 

However, she struggles with Christian's emotional distance and his need for continued control. 

Ultimately, Ana's discomfort with his demands and emotionally detached nature leads her to leave him, feeling that his practices are too deviant for her.

Fifty Shades of Grey is now streaming on Netflix.

Fifty Shades Darker (2017)

Ana and Christian in Fifty Shades Darker.
Fifty Shades Darker

In the sequel, Fifty Shades Darker, Ana begins working as an assistant to Jack Hyde at Seattle Independent Publishing (SIP). 

Christian, wanting Ana back, buys her portraits, but she initially dismisses his warnings about Jack. 

Christian takes Ana to Esclava, a salon owned by Elena Lincoln, who introduced him to BDSM. This angers Ana. Christian reveals his traumatic past, including his mother's overdose and subsequent adoption. 

Ana rebuffs Elena's demand to leave Christian, and Christian disarms his troubled ex-submissive, Leila, by resuming his dominant role.

Christian admits to Ana that he is a sadist who enjoys hurting women resembling his mother, leading Ana to reconsider his marriage proposal. 

During a business trip, Christian's helicopter crashes, prompting a massive search. On his birthday, Elena accuses Ana of being a gold digger, but Christian defends Ana and cuts ties with Elena. 

Christian proposes again with a ring, and Ana accepts, while Jack Hyde secretly vows revenge.

Fifty Shades Darker is now available to rent online for $3.99 or purchase for $14.99. The film will stream on Netflix on Tuesday, July 16. 

Fifty Shades Freed (2018)

Christian Grey in Fifty Shades Freed.
Fifty Shades Freed

In the final installment of the franchise, Fifty Shades Freed, newlyweds Christian and Anastasia cut short their honeymoon due to a break-in at Christian's office by Ana's former boss, Jack Hyde, who steals sensitive files. 

Tensions rise when Christian surprises Ana with a new house and hires architect Gia Matteo, who flirts with him, upsetting Ana. 

Meanwhile, Ana meets Kate Kavanagh, Elliot Grey's girlfriend, and suspects Christian of infidelity with Gia. 

Jack Hyde's attempts to harm Ana escalate, leading to his arrest by Christian's security team. Ana confronts Christian about his controlling behavior, prompting him to take her to Aspen, where Elliot proposes to Kate with Gia's help. 

Their sexual exploration continues but is complicated when Ana reveals her pregnancy, unsettling Christian, who reacts with a drunken spree. 

Ana discovers Christian's troubling past with his former dominant, Elena Lincoln, which strains their relationship. 

Amidst these challenges, Hyde demands a ransom, and Christian reconciles with his past at his mother's grave with Ana by his side.

Fifty Shades Freed is now available to rent online for $3.99 or purchase for $14.99. It will also begin streaming on Netflix on Tuesday, July 16. 

- About The Author: David Thompson
As an editor, writer, and podcast host, David is a key member of The Direct. He is an expert at covering topics like Marvel, DC, Star Wars, and business-related news following the box office and streaming.