Thursday, February 2, 2012

Oscar Project 2012: My Week with Marilyn

Movie: My Week with Marilyn

I'm not particularly a Marilyn Monroe fan (nothing against her, just never got that interested), so I was surprised and delighted by how much I enjoyed this quiet charmer based on the memoirs of a young man who worked on the set of a movie Monroe filmed in England with Sir Laurence Olivier. Honestly, I don't know enough to judge the historical accuracy of any of it, but I thought the movie worked both as a self-contained story and as an examination of issues of celebrity that felt surprisingly modern. I know some have criticized this movie for viewing Monroe through a male gaze, but because I saw this more as Colin's story, that didn't really bother me. I guess I feel like when you're basing a movie on a man's memoir in the first place, that ship has sailed, and while sure, I'd like to see more movies about women on their own terms, I don't think that means I have to resent that this particular movie exists.

I also want to mention that several of the actors who weren't nominated for anything did extremely good work here, including Eddie Redmayne, Emma Watson, Michael Kitchen, Julia Ormond, and of course Judi Dench. And I'd like to give this movie bonus points for not playing "Candle in the Wind" over the closing credits.

Availability: It's certainly not everywhere, but it wasn't too hard to find, either. I had a few options and wound up driving about 50 minutes for it.

Nominated In:
Actress in a Leading Role: Michelle Williams did an amazing job as Marilyn. She perfectly walked the very fine line of offering a recognizable portrayal of an iconic figure without suggesting that she was about to go start an impersonation act in Vegas. This would have been a really easy role to overact, and she didn't. And really, years ago, who would have thought? Good on you, Jen Lindley.

Actor in a Supporting Role: I actually wasn't particularly impressed with Branagh's performance here. It was very broad and hammy, and one of the weaker parts of the movie.

Movies left: 46; Days left: 25
Have seen 25% of movies and 41% of nominations.
Movie posts I owe you: 9

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