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My Week with Marilyn (2011)
The best portrayal of Marilyn Monroe to date.
I attended an advance screening of "My Week With Marilyn," and much to my surprise, was absolutely blown away. I was initially very reluctant to accept Michelle Williams as Marilyn, one of the most beautiful and glamorous women of all time, but she was extraordinary - luminous, even. She pulled off the role seamlessly, and turned Ms. Monroe into a layered, complex character, rather than the sex-kitten caricature we are all so used to seeing. Michelle managed to show us the real Marilyn - the woman who so desperately wanted to be loved, to be accepted, to be good at her job. The vulnerability, the mannerisms, the voice - all were pitch perfect. I have no doubt there will be yet another Oscar nomination in Michelle Williams' near-future.
I was also very impressed by Eddie Redmayne, who's character was arguably the heart of the film. He was excellent as the star-struck yet sensitive Colin Clark, who helped Marilyn through her very difficult time on the set of "The Prince and the Showgirl." This was definitely a star-making turn for Eddie - I expect we'll be seeing much more of him.
The movie is similar in tone to "The King's Speech," and was helped by a beautiful score and wonderful costumes. Director Simon Curtis, who devoted eight years of his life to this project, did a wonderful job capturing the essence of 1950's England. The wardrobe department deserves a nomination, as do the writers. Kenneth Branagh was superb as Laurence Olivier, as was the great Judi Dench as Dame Sybil.
All in all, one of the best films I've seen this year, and definitely the best (not to mention most authentic) portrayal of Marilyn ever to hit the silver screen. I couldn't have been more impressed.