MY WEEK WITH MARILYN--Directed by Simon Curtis/ Starring Michelle Williams, Eddie Redmayne, Kenneth Branagh with Julia Ormond and Emma Watson/written by Adrian Hodges from books by Colin Clark/Original Music by Conrad Pope/rated R/ 1hr36min
Bifocal Review by Barbara and Gordon Rich
(B) This film is about a week with Marilyn Monroe, as told from the viewpoint of a young assistant (Eddie Redmayne) on the romantic comedy,The Prince and the Showgirl. Michelle Williams, as Marilyn, is very convincing, showing her vulnerable side as well as her notorious role as a sex symbol. Kenneth Branagh deserves a nod for his role as the frustrated Sir Lawrence Olivier. He captures the very essence of his character. Redmayne’s innocence as an awestruck assistant plays well during this film as he leads us through this unusual week, combining the prim and proper English and the more relaxed American style. I loved, also, the musical score. I enjoyed my week with Marilyn. It was nostalgic even if it was only two hours in a theater. I give it three binoculars.
(G) This film was another unexpected pleasure this movie season. I am not sure why I didn’t expect the very best. Kenneth Branagh—who never disappoints--was absolutely perfect as Sir Lawrence Olivier. Michelle Williams’ talent (and a body double) made me forget that she doesn’t really resemble Ms. Monroe, but she does have a special something, like Marilyn, that lights up the screen. The film was so good it made me want to go out and buy one of Colin Clark’s books. Yes, he is the lucky young man whose claim to fame was that Marilyn Monroe paid special attention to him for a few days. He also wrote two books on the subject apparently (I’d never heard of him before) but I love it when a desire for the written word is the result of a film’s full and rich portrayal. Naturally, it doesn’t hurt that the central subject matter was Marilyn Monroe. I give it three and a half binoculars and predict nominations for Branagh, Redmayne and Williams.