According to viewers of the Reelz Channel in the US:
- Some Like it Hot
- Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
- The Seven Year Itch
- The Misfits
- All About Eve
- How to Marry a Millionaire
- The Prince and the Showgirl
- Bus Stop
- There’s No Business Like Show Business
The top 3 were much as I expected, but I was surprised that All About Eve – a classic for sure, but only a minor part for Marilyn – rated so highly, and that There’s No Business Like Show Business made the list while River of No Return and Let’s Make Love did not.
Personally, I would place Bus Stop much higher, and I’d also include one of MM’s lesser-known starring roles, in Don’t Bother to Knock. What would your choices be?
Read my tribute to the late, great Jane Russell, over here
One of Marilyn’s finest co-stars and a loyal friend, Jane Russell died on Monday, February 28.
Actor James Franco, seen here with co-host Anne Hathaway, briefly – and somewhat randomly – channelled Marilyn on Oscar night last Sunday.
“It puzzled many why a young, interesting actor like Franco would take a lame job like hosting the Oscars…he began the night game and filled with possibility during the opening skit, but as the hours wore on his enthusiasm dampened and waned. Halfway through he tested the very boundaries of our concepts of humiliation by coming out on stage in Marilyn Monroe drag for a piece that was anti-comedy in the finest Andy Kaufman tradition. Finally by the end Franco was apathy personified, lazily reading his lines from the teleprompter, seemingly unclear that ‘The King’s Speech’ had just won Best Picture, and even rolling his eyes in the final moments of the show.”
Here’s the full schedule:
Monday, February 28th, “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” (1953)
Monday, March 7th, “The Seven Year Itch” (1955)
Monday, March 14th, “Bus Stop” (1956)
Monday, March 21st, “The Prince and the Showgirl” (1957)
Monday, March 28th, “Some Like It Hot” (1959)
Film critic Peter Bradshaw, of The Guardian, thinks Howard Hawks’ Monkey Business (1952), featuring Marilyn as inept secretary Miss Laurel, is an ‘ace ape jape’:
“It is part romp, part druggie-surrealist masterpiece, and a complete joy. ‘Monkey Business’ is undervalued by some, on account of its alleged inferiority to the master’s 30s pictures, and the accident of sharing a title with a film by the Marx Brothers. I can only say that this film whizzes joyfully along with touches of pure genius: at once sublimely innocent and entirely worldly…Dr Fulton drinks [a youth drug]; his short sight is cured and he instantly gets a new youthful haircut, jacket, and snazzy roadster, in which he takes smitten secretary Lois (Marilyn Monroe) for a day’s adventures. (The memory of Grant with his Coke-bottle glasses exchanging dialogue with the entranced Marilyn was revived eight years later by Tony Curtis in ‘Some Like It Hot.’)”
Full review at The Guardian
Monkey Business screens tomorrow at 6pm, NFT2, in London’s BFI Southbank, as part of the ongoing Howard Hawks season. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes follows at 8.30 pm. Marilyn’s two collaborations with Hawks will also feature in a Hawks season at Edinburgh’s Filmhouse Cinema next month.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and The Seven Year Itch are showing at the world-famous Egyptian Theatre in Los Angeles on January 23 at 7.30 pm.
Marilyn’s two films with Howard Hawks – Monkey Business (1952) and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) will be screened at the Filmhouse Cinema in Edinburgh this March, as part of a tribute season to this multi-talented director, beginning this Friday with The Big Sleep.
PS: Gentlemen Prefer Blondes will also be screened at the BFI Southbank, London, from February 13-18.
MM fan Aylon E found The Best of Marilyn Monroe, a DVD boxset, for just £4 at Sainsbury’s today (selected stores only, offer not online.) Includes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, How to Marry a Millionaire, The Seven Year Itch and Marilyn Monroe: The Final Days (a documentary about the making of the unfinished comedy, Something’s Got to Give, including rare footage and interviews.)