[pullquote cite=”” type=”left, right”][amazon text=Amazon&template=carousel&chan=That Film Guy&asin=B0064YORKK][/pullquote] The white dress, the red lips and the unmistakable voice is finally relived after many years, My Week with Marilyn provides a brief glimpse into one of the world’s most iconic figures from decades past. Many are fascinated with her style, grace and more importantly her private life and what was going on behind closed doors. Simon Curtis has brought Colin Clark’s memoirs of his first job on set of a film (The Prince and The Showgirl) to life, and what a time he would have on this production.
Michelle Williams leads the production with a stellar cast to back her, including Dame Judi Dench as Dame Sybil Thorndike, and Kenneth Branagh as Sir Laurence Olivier along with relative newbie Eddie Redmayne as Colin Clark himself. From the outset I was relatively wary of how Marilyn Monroe would be portrayed but as soon as Michelle Williams appeared on screen you could see it would be smooth sailing from here on out.
Clark’s memoir begins with him describing how he ended up on site at Pinewood studios. Camping out on Sir Olivier’s company couch a job was found, 3rd Assistant Director and Laurence’s skivy. From then on his life became work, 24/7, exceeding his parents expectations and his own. After running around on set and in his own time for cast, crew and the big guys, he comes into contact with Marilyn for the 1st time and is mesmerized. Slowly she becomes more and more dependent on him as protector and confidant as their relationship blossoms. Clark’s life will change, for better and for worse.
Simon Curtis captured 1957 stylistically with the set designs and costumes. Marilyn being dressed in figure hugging clothes and her standard red lipstick transforms Michelle Williams into her carbon copy. Capturing her unease, vagueness and fear of failing others perfectly, Williams captivates the audience. Very few knew Marilyn up close and personally despite her shortly lived life being controversial and covered by press.
Rumours were fuelling information within the press which could prove that becoming the actress completely would be difficult; however Williams rises to the challenge and hits the nail on the head. The only criticism I have is that despite spending most of the time on screen, I still left feeling like I knew very little about the actress and why she acts this way. Why does she need copious amounts of pills to get her through the day? What happened in her past to effect her bright future so much? Maybe lack of information and first hand details is why the film felt incomplete.
Eddie Redmayne appears, young fresh faced and raring to go from the beginning. Full of enthusiasm and enchantment the audience will fall in love with him as soon he appears on the silver screen, and feel for him when things start to go wrong. His character is much younger than he is personally but his talent shows that he can place himself in a place where his life is just starting to take off and the world is his oyster. Despite being in small roles previous to this, he proved he has the weight and talent to carry on much further. I look forward to watching the next project he takes on.
My Week With Marilyn soars above my expectations despite not being as meaty as I wanted it to be. The acting was first class, despite Kenneth Branagh’s annoying accent.