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59 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Something's Got to Give - The Last Act,
Immediately following the documentary there is an edited, reconstruction of the scenes shot for the film. This film, also starring Dean Martin, "Something's Got To Give", which was to be a remake of the Grant/Dunne film "My Favorite Wife", finally saw an audience as "Move Over Darling" with James Garner and Doris Day.
This is an absolute must for MM fans. It's a piece of cinematic history to be treasured. It may also be purchased as part ofMarilyn Monroe: Diamond Collection- a fabulous set.
it is also sold singley here:Marilyn Monroe: The Final Days-check for best deal and availability
The DVD runs nearly 2 hours in total.
Some Like It Hot
Don't Bother to Knock [VHS]
(both also on DVD)
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marilyn At Her Very Best,
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Long Live Marilyn.....in our hearts!,
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous at 36,
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 minutes of Something's Got to Give a Keeper,
This version never really gets to the end, however. Instead, after 35 minutes, this film has its own touching ending, and we all know what comes next for Monroe.
This movie needed to come out of the vault. It is a must have for Monroe fans, and for viewers who appreciate multiple movie versions of the same story. In this case, it's a great job of editing the material that was available into a cohesive story. Additional plus: the film comes after a good deal of footage/ commentary about what was happening in Monroe's life at the time, so there is a some context that makes watching the movie at the end wortwhile.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Luminous out-takes and an absolutely magnetic Monroe,
The commentary unfortunately tends to favor the negative side of the studio issues playing out. They fail to mention or down play that Monroe was the #1 female box office star of the past decade, that her films were keeping 20th Century Fox above water for the past several years and they were paying her approximately 200K due to a loop hole in her early contract. Yet Cleopatra was literally bankrupting Fox after almost 2 years in production and Taylor was receiving 1M for her film. This was the last film under Monroe's old contract, and it was a flimsy B film that she didn't want to do. Fox expected Monroe to complete & release the hit quickly, thus it would help finance the ballooning Cleopatra and the sinking Fox. Monroe resented these facts, the film and didn't want to make it, who could blame her? So she was "sick & tardy", they fired her, she made history again at Madison Square Garden (Happy Birthday Mr. President), her legal team countered, Dean Martin quit (he refused to work with anyone but Monroe as his contract stated), Fox quickly rehired her with a large raise...Dumb like a Fox.
It's of note to watch her out-takes when she sees her children for the first time in 5 years, her eyes reveal a range as large as the Alps that take you on a journey in seconds - many shades of pathos, yearning and love.
In film class at Yale they devoted a whole class to Marilyn, showing a series of clips with a multitude of famous dignitaries with her: Presidents, Queens, Kings, actors, opera stars, famous scholars, etc. and at the end the professor asked us to name any of the 17 dignitaries with Monroe, we could name only 4. Such is the power of her luminous presence. Monroe's flesh impact owns the screen like no other - even when someone else is talking your still watching her.
Was she the best actor, dancer or singer? No...then again she obviously didn't have to be.
Since her passing it's safe to say they'll be no one at this level of screen presence, close but sans the flesh impact that only she can deliver. They'll still be watching her 1500 years from now.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ms. Tragic Beauty,
directed by Patty Ivins Specht
This is a documentary on the production of 'SOMETHING'S GOT TO GIVE', the unfinished film starring Marilyn Monroe, Dean Martin and Cyd Charisse. This movie was a remake of the 1940 film 'MY FAVORITE WIFE' which starred Cary Grant and Irene Dunne. The movie itself has a pretty funny story where a man believes that his first wife has died or disappeared so he gets remarried. When it turns out wife #1 is still around and comes back into his life, there are lots of awkward social situations.
By this time in her career, Marilyn was known for being extremely late to the set and also for demanding a lot of creative control over her characters- two things most directors won't put up with. This was especially true of George Cukor, the famous RKO director who was slated to direct Marilyn's movie because he owed the studio a favor. Marilyn's tardiness was a huge problem on 'SOMETHINGS GOT TO GIVE'- the only thing worse than her being late was when she didn't show up at all! But what was wrong with Marilyn at this time in her life? Several people are interviewed including her personal physician and some of her closest friends. The consensus seems to be that she felt nobody took her seriously as a actress. She was under the wing of dramatic acting coach Paula Strasberg and had attended husband Lee's prestigious "Actor's Studio" in efforts to flourish as a real talent. But she also became ill and was advised by not one but two physicians postpone production on her latest film. The studio was already way behind schedule and would lose a tremendous amount of money if the doctors' advice was followed. This escalated tensions between Cukor, Monroe and the film crew. When Marilyn was on the set, everyone loved the results, including the highly publicized swimming pool scene. But since the director never knew when Marilyn would show up, he had to "shoot around" her- meaning he shot every scene in the movie that she wasn't in. After these scenes were through, there was nothing left for Cukor to do. When Marilyn made her famous appearance at President Kennedy's b-day gala, Cukor was understandably angry. To her credit, Marilyn had told the studio about the gala before production on the movie had started, and if it were an isolated incident it could've been written off as a big misunderstanding. Unfortunately this was just one of many problems between the director and the starlet. Eventually Marilyn was fired (and replaced) which was no doubt devastating for her insecurities. She decided to pull herself together and generate positive publicity for herself. A sympathetic article featuring her side of the story and new photographs was published and this probably "humanized" her to the fans. The positive publicity must've worked because the studio negotiated to re-hire her and resume shooting on the movie. Tragically, Marilyn died of a drug overdose before the production started back up. 'SOMETHINGS GOT TO GIVE' was scrapped and a new version called 'MOVE OVER DARLING' was made in 1963 with Doris Day and James Garner in the lead roles.
Marilyn's early death has been discussed many times before. There is no question that she had a lifelong battle with depression and was using far too many pills. Her miscarriage and failed high profile marriages were also all over the papers which has to be extremely hard to deal with. But her life did seem to be back on track around the time of her passing. Does this mean she didn't kill herself? It is impossible to know and frankly I'm glad this movie doesn't focus too much on the issue. You will hear the opinions of people who knew her, including some of the last people to see her. But you will not hear any of the "toxic enema" theories or Kennedy-mafia secrets here- this movie is more memorial than speculation.
The last part of this documentary is an attempted reconstruction of 'SOMETHINGS GOT TO GIVE' using the existing footage and notes from the directors, producers, etc. This cut runs a little under 40 minutes. The movie is sort of strange to watch, especially after viewing the "making of" right before. Not to mention that Marilyn only showed up for about half the days of shooting. Watching the movie, you don't always think of the story or the characters being shown- you think of Marilyn and what she (and her peers) were going through. Its a melacholy moment where you can't really suspend disbelief enough to forget the story of the person who more than anyone has come to embody "tragic beauty".
Very well made and full of exclusive material. Essential for fans of Marilyn or 1960s Hollywood.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One last hurrah for Monroe,
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars not just another documentary,
This review is from: Marilyn Monroe: The Final Days (Cinema Classics Collection) (DVD)This fascinating, well done and profoundly sad documentary is an eye-opener into the final months of Marilyn Monroe's troubled personal life and how it impacted her ability to work on "Something's Got to Give." The story, narrated by James Coburn, is told at a good pace without being too rushed or too slow; and there's a great deal of compassion for Marilyn from her peers who worked with her on the film including Cyd Charisse and producer Henry Weinstein. True, while Marilyn added to the problems by being remarkably tardy and insisting that Paula Strasberg essentially direct her when George Cukor was the real director, the filmmakers make no bones about it that Fox was incredibly insensitive to Marilyn's personal problems by forging ahead as if there was really nothing wrong with her that some good old fashioned strict discipline wouldn't fix. Sadly, we know in hindsight that poor Marilyn needed so much more TLC than she ever got from Fox or perhaps anyone at that time despite the fact that she had been their biggest star since Shirley Temple! Marilyn had made tons of money for Fox, too.
But Fox was panicking over the out of control cost of "Cleopatra" and poor Marilyn was trampled as a result. Again, Marilyn had her share of human faults and foibles; she was a troubled woman who shouldn't have been working at that time. Nevertheless, there's one poignant moment with producer Henry Weinstein when he recalls asking Fox if an actor had had a heart attack would they postpone shooting the film and Fox said of course--but an emotional condition was not reason enough to postpone shooting even after Marilyn was found in her bed after what was a dangerous but survivable overdose of drugs.
It may seem as if I've given it all away; but I can assure you that I didn't! There's plenty more to this tragic story that what I've written here; and the footage from rehearsals not to mention the restoration of the film that was never finished is incredible. Other interviews give us insight from associate producer Gene Allen; writer Walter Bernstein and producer David Brown.
The DVD comes with a few bonus features. We see Marilyn Monroe as a "Blue Book" model in 1943 and 1948; and we get "Movietone Newsreels" as well as the trailer for "Move Over Darling" when Fox actually did complete the film with Doris Day and James Garner. By the way, this was all to be a remake of "My Favorite Wife" with Cary Grant and Irene Dunne.
Marilyn Monroe: The Final Days is a must have for Marilyn Monroe fans and film buffs. People interested in looking at the tough world of Hollywood politics would do well to add this to their collections; and if you like documentaries about Hollywood stars you will not be disappointed.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical Monroe in sublime form~RIP Marilyn...,
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Marilyn Monroe: The Final Days (Cinema Classics Collection) by Marilyn Monroe (DVD)