Michelle Williams becomes what would be an enduring icon of the Hollywood sex bomb, but this biopic, based on the memoirs of Colin Clark (in this movie played by Eddie Redmayne) goes beyond the surface of Marilyn the icon, and examines closely Marilyn the person, with her dumb blonde persona hiding her insecurities and pressures faced when her techniques aren't so appreciated by fellow cast and crew. Williams dissolves and becomes Monroe and her performance alone is worth an admission ticket to see the actress she portrays come alive on the big screen once more, coached to perfection.
And for film buffs, you're probably in good company as the film has plenty of film luminaries portrayed on the big screen as well, since Clark's memoirs take place during the time when he was 3rd Assistant Director to the film The Prince and the Showgirl, directed and starring Sir Laurence Olivier (Kenneth Branagh), husband of Vivien Leigh (Julia Ormond), and co-starring the likes of Dame Sybil Thorndike (Judi Dench), all of whom gave wonderful performances that provided a sneak peek into the troubles behind the scenes and making of the film, which was anything but smooth.
But ultimately the film deals with Clark and his week long romantic dalliance with Monroe, and just how affected he was by the entire fleeting experience, especially since he's also going for a shot at a relationship with a wardrobe assistant (Emma Watson in one of her rare forays outside the Harry Potter series). The lush production values at recreating an era is excellent, as is Simon Curtis' direction in never lulling into the temptation to fall back on archive stock footage, and paints a sympathetic picture of someone who struggled for that separation between her private life and adoring public spotlight.
You can read my review of My Week with Marilyn at movieXclusive.com by clicking on the logo below.