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Wick's Review

Created Jun 23, 2019 03:49PM PST • Edited Jun 26, 2019 01:03AM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Good 3.0

    Showbiz legends Marilyn Monroe, Lawrence Olivier, Vivien Leigh & Arthur Miller give My Week with Marilyn more sizzle than it deserves. A cinematic goddess descends to live amongst the hoi polloi and everyone loses their minds, the men mostly, the women indirectly through their men. Marilyn’s also crazy.

    Michelle Williams essays Marilyn Monroe resplendently, albeit more in long shot than closeup. There was only one Marilyn in closeup. Williams gives the movie’s best pseudo-celeb performance, then Branagh’s Olivier, Ormond’s Leigh & Dougray Scott’s Arthur Miller. Dominic Cooper’s Milton Greene is nails, natch.

    Ironically, the need to depict so many legends gives My Week with Marilyn a “hey kids, let’s put on a show” feel. It feels good and provides insight, but is hardly legendary itself. Death of a Moviestar it ain’t.

  3. Very Good 3.5

    Michelle Williams captures Marilyn Monroe’s flightiness and power both, a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown, yet one who instantly renders men into melted piles of steaming testosterone-brain.

    It’s not just the femme-fabulous lead that makes this a woman dominant film.
    Her female costars outshine the males pretty much up and and down the cast, Dom Cooper excepted.

    • Eddie Redmayne underwhelms as a guy overwhelmed by Marilyn. His character wrote the book.
    • Julia Ormond oozes style as an older Vivien Leigh, 40something and put out to pasture.
    • Kenneth Branagh, as her husband Sir Laurence Olivier, wants to seduce Marilyn, so his wife says. The estimable Branagh won’t mark this as one of his great performances, yet it is plenty adequate.
    • Judi Dench dazzles as an elderly Dame who still has some sizzle.
    • Dominic Cooper – the great – captures Milton Greene’s toxic mix of longing and ambition.
    • Zoë Wanamaker straddles being fearsome and foolish as Method-acting coach Paula Strasberg.
    • Emma Watson is plenty effective as a wardrobe girl outshined by Marilyn Monroe, poor thing.
    • Pip Torrens disappears as Sir Kenneth Clark, as does Geraldine Somerville as Lady Jane Clark.
  4. Male Stars Very Good 3.5
  5. Female Stars Great 4.0

    Michelle Williams

  6. Female Costars Great 4.0

    Judi Dench, Julia Ormond, Emma Watson, Zoë Wanamaker

  7. Male Costars Very Good 3.5
  8. Great 4.0

    My Week with Marilyn took nearly 20 years to get made, from the diary of something that happened 40 years earlier over the course of a week. The fact that that’s worth a movie speaks to Marilyn’s power.

  9. Direction Great 4.0

    Well directed by Simon Curtis, who would then direct the superior Woman in Gold four years later.

  10. Play Great 4.0

    Adrian Hodges wrote the screenplay from Colin Clark’s memoirs.
    Clark is played by Eddie Redmayne in the film. Clark to Monroe about Olivier:

    He’s a great actor who wants to be a moviestar. You’re a moviestar who wants to be a great actor.

  11. Music Great 4.0
  12. Visuals Great 4.0
  13. Content
  14. Risqué 2.0

    Marilyn deserves nothing less than 2.1x on the Sex scale, well into titillating territory.
    Sexually speaking, she’s XX, plus a bit more.

  15. Sex Titillating 2.1
  16. Violence Gentle 1.5
  17. Rudeness Salty 2.3
  18. Glib 1.3

    My Week with Marilyn stays this side of surreal in its circo-reality, high-end glib as I understand it. Nice.

  19. Circumstantial Glib 2.0
  20. Biological Natural 1.0
  21. Physical Natural 1.0

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