“Blonde” insults Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe has been dead for six decades, and she is still more fascinating and relevant than most of the Hollywood stars who are here with us. If Kim Kardashian, the most famous woman in the world right now, tries very hard to prove to us that she continues her way through these and other PR tricks – a sign that Monroe has really established her position as the biggest star of them all. It is worth remembering that there was Marilyn Monroe, and that Hollywood did not make her life easy, Even when she was known and loved; It is worth remembering that she starred in some of the best films in the history of the industry, and that she was excellent in them. Her memory should be cherished, because she deserves it. “Blonde,” director Andrew Dominick’s new film on Netflix, was supposed to do just that. But here’s a request to anyone interested in getting to know Hollywood’s greatest icon a little better: don’t watch “Blonde.” He does her no favors.

This, by the way, is the stage where I would describe the plot of the film – introducing the heroine for those who don’t know, briefly describing her journey from point A to point T and the obstacles encountered on her way. The obstacle in my way, for that matter, is the fact that “Blonde” doesn’t really have a plot. Marilyn was born Norma Jean Baker to a struggling mother who abandoned her, and from there we know Norma Jean under her new name: Marilyn Monroe, a beautiful model who dreams of becoming a star, and indeed gets there, but suffers all the way up. She is raped, she is exploited, she is beaten and she cannot conceive children. And all, it seems, because of one thing that Marilyn according to “Blonde” cannot overcome: she didn’t have a father.

The human soul is a particularly mysterious bird, but “Blonde” seems to have settled on one solution to the riddle that is Marilyn Monroe. Monroe was fatherless and searched for him all her life. She couldn’t find him, and the horrible men in the world took advantage of his lack in her life for their physical pleasure. As a man, it wouldn’t be my place to determine whether any movie is feminist enough or not, but as a full-fledged viewer I can say that in many scenes the monotonous portrayal of Marilyn as a perpetual victim disgusted me. Likewise, the moments that take place in Monroe’s child-darkened womb feel like criminal anti-abortion propaganda, even if the poet’s intention was completely different. Yes, scenes that are shown from the point of view of the main character’s womb, moments where the camera is placed (allegedly) inside Monroe’s genitalia. These are things that happen in this movie.

I was not disgusted by Marilyn herself – a woman who will forever fascinate, amuse and sadden me – but by the film that allows itself to make her such a miserable character. In real time, I was indifferent, because the film had already reached its third hour; The more I remember it, the more angry I get. Monroe wasn’t just beautiful, and she wasn’t just ugly (although historically, both of those are pretty accurate); She was a talented actress and a very, very funny woman. Maybe the director doesn’t think that talented and funny women deserve to star in two hour and forty five minute epics, unless they’re wailing and bleeding throughout.

Dominic knows how to frame and knows how to direct a camera; Indeed, “Blonde” is a spectacular film to watch. If we examine it only by its visual beauty, it is definitely one of the standouts of the year. But all this beauty does not seem very reasoned. The film zigzags between black and white shots and color shots without any consistency or legality. The feeling is that Netflix gave an unlimited budget to an enthusiastic film student, and he chose to act as a boy stricken with libido and not as a filmmaker with a cohesive vision. As a 3-minute clip it could have worked well, but as a serious and long piece of cinematography it is exhausting. It is an artistic and sophisticated film, apparently, which is conclusive proof that garbage can be made under the guise of art, not only in commercial Hollywood.

Marilyn Monroe. There’s one actress who can talk in her swag without being insufferable, and that actress is Monroe herself | צילום:
Frank Povolny/Twentieth Century Fox/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis, Getty Images

The film rests on the shoulders of Ana de Armas, and she doesn’t really do a good job here. I’ll admit it and not be ashamed, this is an actress that doesn’t interest me, not even in her more sophisticated roles, like in Rian Johnson’s “Well Written Murder” for which she was nominated for the Golden Globe. However, it is difficult to say that the film’s failure was caused by her fault; There are few actresses who could hold such an awkward role as the one written for her. There may be a fundamental flaw in Monroe’s character as the basis of the film: there is exactly one actress who can speak in her squealing voice without being so insufferable, and that actress is Monroe herself. Everyone else will forever be seen, no matter how hard they try, as a Saturday Night Live imitation. This is not helped by the fact that the script and direction apparently ordered De Armes to whine and say “Daddy” for 70% of the film. not nice.

It is possible that “Blonde” tried to be a work that screams the cry of the movie star that Hollywood and the patriarchy have abused for many years. It may actually be a real feminist protest featuring violent men and women who suffered their abuse, whether they were famous athletes like Joe DiMaggio, Monroe’s second husband, or President Kennedy, who appears in the most sickening scene in the film. In practice, the feeling is that the film will do the opposite service to this goal: the film revels in the violence that is directed towards Monroe, and returns and presents her as the sexual object that we have always mistakenly thought she was.

From “Blonde”. The film does an injustice to Marilyn Monroe, no less | Photo: PR courtesy of Netflix

At one point, the movie was making fun of me, and all I could think about was the real Monroe – the one who appeared in “Hot and Tasty”, “All About Eve” and “Men Prefer Blondes”, and gave a head. I remembered Monroe teaching us who a woman’s best friends are, the rather amusing quotes attributed to her, some of which she must have actually said. Maybe Monroe deserves a movie that really pays homage to the woman she was, and on the other hand, maybe we should leave her alone (Kimberly, please Put that dress back in place, it’s not funny) and settle for those classic movies in which she herself starred.

Either way, I’d like to imagine Monroe watching “Blonde,” the film that purported to be a piece of feminist art and turned out to be a disgraceful, semi-pornographic piece. I imagine her rising from her grave, blowing her nose and sitting down at some celebratory premiere next to Andrew Dominick. I’d like to think how at the end of the two and three-quarter hours, during which she hadn’t looked at her phone even once, Monroe would have looked at Dominic and fired one of her famous quotes in his direction: “Honey,” she’d tell him, “If you’re going to be two-faced, make sure that one of them will be beautiful.”


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