My Week with Marilyn (10/10)
by Tony Medley
Run time 101
OK for children.
One of my bridge
partners, now deceased, was married to Marilyn Monroe's psychiatrist.
One evening he took her out for her birthday dinner, and who showed up
but Marilyn herself. His birthday present to her was dinner with
Marilyn. All those years later she glowed as she told me of that night.
She said Marilyn couldn't have been sweeter or more attentive, as if my
friend were the only person in the world who mattered.
remains an enigma to this day. She was a star in a world that didn't
contain Oprah or all the other talk shows that strip a celebrity naked
emotionally, so that the world knows everything there is to know and
The filming of
The Prince and the Showgirl (1956) is legendary for the
relationship between Marilyn (Michelle Williams) and her co-star
Lawrence Olivier (Kenneth Brannagh). According to the legend, Marilyn
was difficult, constantly late, and she drove Olivier nuts.
This film is
based on the autobiographical memoir of the same name by Colin Clark
(Eddie Redmayne), which followed his first, The Prince, The Showgirl
and Me, which told about his experiences working as third assistant
director on the film. But one week was missing. A few years later he
came out with the titular memoir which explained why that week was
missing, and that's this film.
Curtis clearly knows about pace. There's not a second that drags. And he
gets the most out of his cast. Michelle Williams gives an award-quality
performance as Marilyn. She not only looks and moves like Marilyn, she
acts like her and she captures her insecurities, but also her presence
as a star and how she used it.
charming as the exasperated Olivier. I remember the film well because
it's one of my favorite Marilyn Monroe movies, and even though Brannagh
doesn't look a thing like Olivier, he sounds exactly like him.
photography (Ben Smithard) is beautiful, especially in catching
Marilyn's ripe red lips.
Redmayne gives a
scintillating performance as the young man infatuated with a gorgeous
movie star. Because the relationship is romantic but platonic, it takes
a lot of skillful acting by both Redmayne and Williams to capture its
(Adrian Hodges) is very good, even if it does steal a Goldwynism ("The
most important thing in acting is honesty. . . And once you learn to
fake that, you're in.") and puts it on Olivier's lips.
This is highly
entertaining, a sure winner.