Stars: Caitlin Leahy and Tyler Johnson
Director: Tosca Musk
Based on the Novel by Sylvia Day
Released November 3, 2017
Produced by Passionflix
Businesswoman Giana Rossi is determined to be successful in her new job, but when her ex-lover Jackson Rutledge waltzes back into her life, their passionate connection ignites not only in the boardroom, but the bedroom.
Afterburn Aftershock is the second original movie released by Passionflix. Adapted from the novel by Sylvia Day, the film follows businesswoman Gia Rossi and her tumultuous relationship with Jax Rutledge, a former lover who resurfaces in Gia’s life. I’ve previously reviewed the book, so I won’t rehash the plot here, but want to focus on the adaptation.
Caitlin Leahy (Gia) and Tyler Johnson (Jax) work well together onscreen. They have definite chemistry that translates both in heated arguments as well as steamy love scenes.
On the Passionflix BON (Barometer of Naughtiness) rating scale, it’s rated 4/Toe Curling Yumminess. What that means is that there’s no nudity in this film, but there are a few love scenes that are open door. While the film isn’t as graphic as the book, it definitely captures the sexual chemistry between Gia and Jax.
One of the only things that bothered me is a purely superficial, stylistic choice. The actor playing Jax (Tyler Johnson) always looked a bit disheveled, with tousled hair in every scene, to the point that I found it distracting. I was supposed to believe that he was a suave, polished businessman, but to me he always looked slightly messy. A small complaint, but something that kept happening and I kept noticing.
As with the adaptation of Hollywood Dirt, the adaptation of Afterburn Aftershock is true to the books. However, I felt that there are nuances to the plot that might have been confusing for someone who hasn’t read the books, in particular some of the details surrounding the business deals. Additionally, I felt that the relationship between Gia and Jax in the books wasn’t fully explained or explored, making what binds them together somewhat elusive. I was left with that same feeling from the film. Since they have history together that we simply don’t see (either in the books or the movie), it was tough for me to understand why these people care about each other so much.
I loved the family dynamics between Gia and her family, especially her close relationships with all her brothers. They provided levity and comic relief in between the drama of Gia and Jax’s relationship. In addition, I also loved the diversity of the cast, which stays true to the book: Gia’s boss, Lei, is Asian and the receptionist at their workplace, LaConnie, is African American.
Of course, the movie delivers an HEA and I enjoyed it overall. Because the movie stays so closely to the book, I think my personal issues with the story have more to do with the source material itself, rather than the adaptation. Nonetheless, it’s an enjoyable film and I’m sure I’ll watch it again.
Rating: 4 stars