Thursday, 5 April 2012

Icon #82 Marilyn Monroe

The most iconic actress of all time.
There have been better actresses than Marilyn Monroe, of that there is little doubt.  But has there been anyone before or since who's had the same level of continued attention or caused so much endless fascination?  Probably not.

To put it bluntly she oozed sex appeal and then, because she died so young, that appeal has never waned.  She'll always be beautiful, vulnerable and blonde.

Monroe fought to be accepted as an actress renowned for her talent much as for her looks.  Her greatest performance, in a movie that still holds up today as a brilliant comedy, played on both aspects.

In Some Like It Hot, Monroe is the ditzy blonde of legend but also the great comedic actress of her generation.  It's hard to not fall in love with her from the moment the first jet of steam at the station causes her to nearly fall, instead her hips sway and off she totters on her heels.  She plays off of Lemon and Curtis brilliantly throughout the movie, their equal in the acting stakes and without her, one of the greatest films of all time just wouldn't be remembered like it is.

Monroe captures something of the fifties and early sixties.  The world slowly liberalising as her star ascended, her face and body a calling card as much as her acting.  She was a precursor to what we call a celebrity today but her early death didn't stop the ascension of the star, it's just kept it rising.

The moment that sticks in the mind more than any other isn't from a film but came in 1962 at President John F Kennedy's birthday bash.  Monroe managed, as was her reputation, to be late on stage, but once the fur coat is off and the dress revealed, no one cared.  And then she starts singing happy birthday.


Sex on a stick frankly.

Tonight's post is dedicated to @danbeames, @Girl_In_A_Box, @RebelOtter, @Jay_Vs_World, @IAmGiantWoman, @dubdubble and @RickHarwood.