Jul 23, 2012

Gentlemen prefer blondes [1953]

On Sunday, I was lucky enough to attend a Timeout special free screening of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, a classic 1953 film starring the beautiful Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell, held to celebrate the release of a special 4 Monroe films in a BluRay box set (GPB, Seven Year itch, Some like it hot and How to marry a millionaire). Special guest: Suzie Kennedy, the famous starlet impersonator, but more about that later.

The film itself was very entertaining and light, and, as you would expect from a Monroe picture, it was sultry, flirtatious, quirky, funny and sweet. Howard Hawks directed, from a script by Charles Lederer, a film about two friends, Lorelei Lee (Monroe) and Dorothy Shaw (Russell) who travel to France, pursued by many admirers, including a private detective who was hired by Lorelei's fiancé's disapproving father to keep an eye on her, an Olympic team and a rich, sweet old man. The storyline was interesting, the quick developments helped move the film forward and give new sides to the character, and although the end might have been a little predictable, it was still very enjoyable. I loved the musical moments, especially Jane Russell's Olympic number by the pool and of course, the famous Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend scene near the end.

All sets and costumes were stunning- the ladies wardrobe was so beautiful, classic,but daring and very flattering- the red dresses in the beginning, the black jumpsuit at the pool, or the orange dress come in mind. The music, mostly orchestral, was upbeat and provided a perfect score for the lively action.

Casting wise, they did a great job for the two supporting male roles. Tommy Noonan as Gus Esmond Jr makes you smile as he is the loveable guy who is head over heels for Lorelai, and Elliott Reid as the Humphrey Bogart type for Ernie Malone provides a strong, masculine and worthy image as a man who changes his ways because of love. As for the two ladies, both were just perfect. Jane Russell kept us on our toes, giving a sharp, sarcastic, but kind performance of Dorothy, trying to be a good friend to Monroe's character, who, as usual, shined every time she was on screen. Talent, grace, sultriness, mixed with a touch of sweetness, naivety and a few facial expression to highlight them, and you have your Marilyn, in beautiful colours- you can't really stay away or hate her, even if you tried.

Gentlemen prefer blondes was a perfectly enjoyable movie for a lovely Sunday morning and I'm glad I got the chance to see it on the big screen.  

The screening was held at the Curzon Mayfair cinema, and although there was some problems with the bluray, overall I had a wonderful time and I'm also glad I got to see Suzie Kennedy, as well. Her job is, basically, to impersonate Marilyn Monroe at any kind of events she is invited to, be it a private party for Eva Longoria were she has to sing, or a TV commercial. We had a little Q&A and she talked to us about her life, how she got to do this and what she likes and dislikes about Marilyn; I must say I was a little bit impressed by her- she is a smart, beautiful girl (yes, she does look like Monroe).


  1. My favorite moment of this film is when Russell pretends to be Monroe's character. It basically lets her do a Marilyn Monroe impression and I got a big kick out of it.

    1. Yeah, I really liked that, too, Jane Russell was fantastic in this movie, I loved her!