Neum's Review of My Week with Marilyn
My Week with Marilyn(2011)
My Week With Marilyn presents that tired story all over again (as with a recent, familiar example in Me & Orson Welles - an equally unimaginative title!), but this film had a similarly larger-than-life star captured to a tee by Michelle Williams: Marilyn Monroe. Her utter magnetism disarms all in this film, and 'My Week' has the added benefit of Kenneth Branagh's bracing Sir Laurence Olivier, hilarious and crucial in his counter-balance of Monroe. It's basically a film with better direction than editing, and better acting than writing. It's indeed fun to watch; at times breezily entertaining beholding big talents nail their approximations of big talents. Yet the film's true value lies in its examination (or spellbound ogling) of Monroe herself, skimming the surface of the enigmatic screen goddess and her velvety 'aw, shucks' charm framed by her abandonment issues and suggestive manipulation via automated pill-popping. Her magical presence in a room turns even the stuffy Brits to her beckon. The film never delves too deep, though, smartly showing the viewer that the central character's (Colin Clark) love for Monroe never being anything more than infatuation as Monroe's gravitational pull lures him in... but peppering the film with safer touches suggesting tidy packaging (shared scenes between Colin and Marilyn that seem too coming-of-agey cliche). These moments prevent the film from being too far above disposable entertainment, but like Colin Clark's personal experiences, you can't really shake it off primarily because of Williams' Monroe being so gorgeously fantastic.