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Sunday, June 5, 2011

When you Wish Upon a Star ....

Ooops, Will I have to pay Disney for comping part of their song? 

We head now stumbling into a topic that honestly, has no beginning and no end and offers so many angles its difficult to settle the brain on one portion. The only choice is to begin....June 1, 1926 Norma Jeane Mortenson (or Baker if you prefer) enters the world. An unstable mother, an absent (questionable) father welcome Norma Jeane to flutter aimlessly from rock to rock. Later becoming Marilyn it is conceptualized by a fan base that she is two people,never reconciling one or the other. While no doubt some emotional and psychological issues exist (hello, don't we all?) the binding of Norma vs. Marilyn is hardly one of them. The perfect blend of naught/nice and childlike/sophisticated Norma was no victim not even to herself. Jogging the alleyways of Hollywood, claiming a town (and a country) as her own - the strength, focus and determination are obvious. 

As a Happy (Belated) Birthday tribute - 3 films that still cling to my mind as they did when viewing them in my preteen years: 

"The Asphalt Jungle" (1950) - One can't imagine the thrill for a young woman who craved becoming more than a movie star to work with Sterling Hayden, Jean Hagen and John Houston. In a simple yet intriguing role, Norma really becomes Marilyn for the first time on film- her mild yet firm delivery offers a new level of Noir to this crime caper. 

"Don't Bother to Knock" (1952) - With incredible skill and conviction Marilyn plays this role with such intensity it has become associated as part of her real life character. The impressions of her delicacy are so true to life it carried itself with her through out her career. oh- right...its a terrific creepy film - another rewatchable. 

"Bus Stop" (1956) - Over the top play rather than film- big on PERFORMANCE rather than to watch. Marilyn appears to be acting alone, other than her few delightful scenes with Eileen Heckart the others seem to be acting at her instead of with her.......(?)  a classic must view movie.

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