Sunday, January 8, 2012


It's the behind-the-scenes account of the making of the Sir Laurence Olivier/Marilyn Monroe collaboration THE PRINCE AND THE SHOWGIRL, as told by neophyte 3rd assistant director Colin Clark. What was supposed to be the lightest of light comedies was a nightmare behind the scenes, as Marilyn was often on pills, showed up late to set, often flubbed her lines, and basically drove Olivier insane. But, as is said in the movie, when she gets it right she's magic (who cares that it takes a few dozen tries to get it right). Colin had a privileged look (and not just at Marilyn in her dressing room), became Marilyn's ally briefly, fell in love with her, and got his heart broken (as everyone warns him will happen). Marilyn comes across as a force of nature who sometimes dreams of being an ordinary girl.

As far as this movie goes, it's well done and an interesting story. The fact is Michelle Williams is not quite Marilyn and Kenneth Branagh is not quite Olivier, so I could never really lose myself in the characters. But that's a common problem with movies about well known real people, and it's no great slight to say you can't replace Marilyn and Olivier with anyone.

Running Time: 99 minutes
My Total Minutes: 260,532

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