Category Archives: Movies

Tales From Misfit Flats

Photo by Eve Arnold

‘The Misfit Flats are among the most beautiful spots in the world to me!! I was utterly mesmerized. I remember vividly the exact first moment I stood there and the exquisite calm that came over me. I felt it was my natural spot. I couldn’t love that stretch of desert more, but then I loved Dayton and that fabulous bar with the dollars on the ceiling. I’ve loved the memories of that film again and again…’

Gail Levin, director of Making The Misfits, speaking to Laura Tennant in advance of the Dayton Historical Society‘s celebration of the movie’s 50th anniversary,  September 18-19.

Reno Gazette-Journal


Murray on Marilyn: Missing Her Marks

“When you worked with Marilyn Monroe [in ‘Bus Stop’, 1956], there was press around all the time. And everyone was so uptight. Like: ‘Is she gonna know her lines? Is she gonna show up on time?’ And she didn’t know her lines, and she didn’t come on time. But there was kinetic energy [during the shoot] from all of this.”

Don Murray, speaking with Stan Taffel at Cinecon

Lorelei Lee and the Economy

The Wall Street Journal reports this week that economic downturns lead to increases in divorce and infidelity. But as Paul Krugman points out in the New York Times, this is not a new phenomenon – as Lorelei Lee warned us nearly sixty years ago…

“He’s your guy
When stocks are high,
But beware when they start to descend.

It’s then that those louses
Go back to their spouses –
Diamonds are a girl’s best friend.”

The Sugar Kane Hairdo

“Now this is actually a lot easier than it may seem. If your hair is already of the correct length, all you need is a good set of medium barrel hot rollers!

I recommend using hot rollers of about a 1 inch diameter. When you’re putting them in, be sure to hold them up and out from your head when you start rolling, so that they go all the way down to the base of your hair and don’t just hang there.

Make sure not to use too big of sections or the heat won’t adequately penetrate all of the hair. You also want to be sure to roll them in the direction you want the curl to go.

For instance, in the pic above the curl goes toward her forehead and under, so you want to roll the hot roller toward your forehead and under when putting it in.”

Rockabilly Online

Marilyn as Roslyn

“And Roslyn. What’s to say about Roslyn? She has all of the Monroe tics—her wobbly mouth, her baby-voice, her squeal, her wiggle. But all of these characteristics are made sad somehow in this performance, child-like actions that both draw and repel, weapons in her arsenal and her weaknesses. Roslyn reminds me of one aspect of Monroe’s persona that is often ignored—her manipulation of men. I don’t mean this in a negative way, but as a simple fact: men are attracted to her, almost irresistibly, and she uses this to her advantage as a way to survive—she makes her sexuality and vulnerability a performance, a captivating one that is both completely calculated and seemingly innocent. As always with Monroe, you sometimes want to slap her to snap her out of her breathy innocence and other times want to protect her from everything harsh and prickly.”

From ‘The Saddest Girl in the World’, an essay on The Misfits by Letitia Trent, posted at A Bright Wall in a Dark Room at Tumblr.

Miss Caswell: The Original ‘Arm Candy’

Marilyn Monroe was the inspiration for the expression ‘arm candy’, which refers to any woman who decorates the arm of a man – to the envy of other men who see them together. Chicago journalist Marcia Froelke Coburn was commenting on Monroe’s appearance on the arm of actor George Sanders in the film All About Eve in a column in the early 1990s when she coined the phrase.

Marilyn played an aspiring actress, Claudia Caswell, in the classic movie. You can view her scenes on Youtube

Definition from Wordspy:

(ARM kan.dee) n. An extremely beautiful person who accompanies a member of the opposite sex to a party or event, but is not romantically involved with that person (cf. eye candy).

Earliest citation:

‘All About Eve’ (1950, FoxVideo). [Marilyn Monroe had] already had mini-roles in eight movies when she turned up as George Sanders’ arm candy in the party scenes of this film. But her jewel of a performance as an actress-on-the-make caught the public’s attention.
Marcia Froelke Coburn, ‘Marilyn’s enduring appeal’, Chicago Tribune, August 21, 1992

Coburn’s essay was a review of a VHS movie collection, and her comments on Marilyn’s acting were sensitive and insightful.

“As time goes by, she appears more gifted than we knew. Not that this is always apparent in her movies. More often than not, she was miscast, badly used or even made fun of (she was the original blond joke). When she shines, it is sometimes by default.”

You can read Marcia Froelke Coburn’s article in full here