My thing with Marilyn Monroe

This is one of those strange things about me, floating around in a sea of many. I have a fascination with Marilyn Monroe and her life story. It’s not a crazy obsession, I don’t have Marilyn Monroe pillows or posters or anything like that. Not that there is anything wrong with it if you do. There is something I can’t quite put my finger on, that draws me to her story. In the end, I suppose the actual interest can’t be that odd, because there are tons of books, movies and documentaries. Obviously other people out there feel the same way.

I had heard about her, seen paintings and peculiar things when rummaging at flea markets, estate sales and vintage shops when I was super young. The real interest started after I watched Norma Jean & Marilyn back in 1996. My curiosity comes and goes. Well, it’s back in full force. I have no idea what triggered it. It’s just as bad as my obsession with Georgiana, the Duchess of Devonshire and Marie Antoinette 5 years ago. I thought that would never end! Strong, strange, daring and/or different women and their unique stories always draw me in.
This time around, I’ve been watching old movies of hers, watching documentaries and drawing a lot of new conclusions. This is the strange part… Last week, I got completely irritated with her. Now how in the world does someone get irritated with another person they have 1 >>> never met, and 2 >>> is dead. This is how it happened…
I was rolling through interviews and listening to her talk, read things I had never heard before, like how director Otto Preminger said working with Marilyn was like directing Lassie!? He also said she was the stupidest, most self-indulgent tart he had ever come across. After a while, it all started to add up in my head. She did seem self-absorbed, slow as paste rolling uphill and was too lazy to work on her craft, show up on time for anything…
Then I watched Some Like It Hot. Lots of people say it was her best film. I decided before I went into full on Marilyn dislike, I had to give it a chance. Obviously going from old to new was just ticking me off. It was a pretty great movie. For the first time since I had watched her, she seemed to pop her lines, have an ease and grace on film. I do know from watching some behind the scenes info, she was drugged out like mad and never showed up on time, etc…

But she was coming into her own. She was actually starting to get good. I don’t know if it was all the years of being on set finally strengthening her acting, or if it was the time she spent at The Actors Studio, but something was definitely working. Now I feel like she was a very, very sick girl, that was also obviously challenged, or at the least, horribly inconsiderate and selfish. She pretty much reminds me of about a dozen current actresses and reality TV personalities. I think in this day and age, she’d fit in perfectly and no one would give her neurosis a second thought. So there you have it… that’s the completely random thing I’ve been mulling over the last couple weeks.

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