Marilyn Monroe is back in theaters again, this time played by the lovely and brave Michelle Williams, who much like Monroe always seems to be up for pushing herself and taking on a challenge. My Week with Marilyn is not your typical Monroe bio-film, though they throw in a few homages to her iconic dance numbers and songs, this film is really about pulling back the curtain and getting to know what really made Monroe an icon. It wasn’t her curves, it was that mysterious something else that gave her that edge, that sent directors mad, but ultimately made her one of the biggest stars, ever…

The Players:

The Plot:

Much like the title suggests, the film gives the brief glimpse into the life of Marilyn Monroe through the eyes of one of her admirers, who for one week, become something a bit more to Monroe.

The Good:

  • Michelle Williams: She’s getting rave reviews everywhere and rightly so. There are moments where every inch of her, head to toe, you could freeze frame and match directly to a photo of Monroe. She embodied the part, and didn’t just play it. She also didn’t play the cliche, sexy, seductress Marilyn Monroe, but the woman she (likely) was behind the scenes. Which leads us to…
  • Not Your Average Marilyn: They do a great job of showing all the tiny little details that very well made Marilyn, Marlyn Monroe. The fears, the anxiety, the pressure, the need to be loved — they do a great job of exploring what went into the woman, to make her the icon. It wasn’t an easy journey and one, that though we admire, came at a heavy price.
  • Production Quality: From the sets, to the hair, to the chaise lounges and the silk robes, they really made every inch of this film count. You really felt like you were back in that time, with those people and a part of what was going on. Really a great overall production, which made for a great, immersive experience, which made the film feel that much more important.
  • Amazing Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Emma Watson, Kenneth Branagh, Judi Dench, Dominic Cooper, Philip Jackson, Michelle Williams and the rest, all deserve a round of applause for their work on this film. Though Williams leads the way, with Branagh and Redmayne supporting her all the way, it’s really the impressive cast as a whole that makes this film work as well as it does.

The Bad:

  • Monroe Hip Pads: There are a few shots where it’s very obvious that they simply padded Michelle Williams’ hips and boobs to give her the Monroe curves. It’s not a problem that they did it (even if Williams would have gained enough to be Monroe’s weight, it’s hard to gain it in all the right spots), it’s simply a problem because you can SEE the pads and it takes away from William’s performance and the believability.

Overall:

This is a great film. One that will be nominated for many statues come award season. Is it the winner? There’s something about it that might not quite have the edge to push it over the top, BUT it’s a great film, finely made, never dull and definitely worth a trip to the cinemas.

Rating: 8.5

See My Week with Marilyn in theaters November 25th!