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The Misfits

185 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Expertly directed by John Huston (The Maltese Falcon) from a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize winner Arthur Miller, The Misfits is a probing, exciting drama (The Film Daily) of honesty, intensity and sheer poetic brilliance. Divorced and disillusioned, Roslyn Tabor (Marilyn Monroe) befriends a group of misfits, including an aging cowboy (Clark Gable), a heartbroken mechanic (Eli Wallach) and a worn-out rodeo rider (Montgomery Clift). Through their live-for-the-moment lifestyle, Roslyn experiences her first taste of freedom, exhilaration and passion. But when her innocent idealism clashes with their hard-edged practicality, Roslyn must risk losing their friendship...and the only true love she's ever known.

It was the last roundup for Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe, who gave their final performances in this melancholy modern Western. Arthur Miller wrote the script (some say overwrote) as a contemplation of his then-wife, Monroe, and set the piece in the half-world of Reno, Nevada. The dangers of this kind of meta-fictional approach are not entirely avoided, but the clean, clear-eyed direction of John Huston keeps the film grounded. And then there are the people: Gable a warrior past his time, Monroe overwhelmed by the world and its attentions, Montgomery Clift visibly broken in pieces, Eli Wallach a postwar neurotic. If the encroaching mortality of Gable, Monroe, and Clift weren't enough, the stark photography and Alex North's score confirm this as a film about loss. It may have its problems, but seen at a distance of many years, The Misfits scatters its tender mercies with an aching beauty. --Robert Horton

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe, Montgomery Clift, Thelma Ritter, Eli Wallach
  • Directors: John Huston
  • Writers: Arthur Miller
  • Producers: Frank E. Taylor
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Closed-captioned, Letterboxed, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: June 19, 2001
  • Run Time: 124 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005AUKC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,393 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Misfits" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

169 of 177 people found the following review helpful By F. Gentile on June 21, 2002
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
It's almost impossible to review this as just a movie, as it is, to movie buffs at least, such a curio piece. As everyone knows, the screenplay, written by Arthur Miller, started out as a tribute to his wife, Marilyn Monroe, but proved to be the death knell for their marriage. Though this looks like a "Western", it is far from it. It is an almost obscene look into the coming together of a group of lost souls who have nothing left to lose. This John Houston film was famously fraught with problems, many related to M.M.'s real life breakdown, and went over budget, and became, at that time, the most expensive black & white film to date, a dubious distinction. That Miller based "Roslyn" on Marilyn is now well known, a portrait at once flattering and brutally honest. If there's any doubt that Roslyn is M.M., watch for the scene when Marilyn opens a locker , in she & Clarks little "love cottage", there are well known glamour pin-ups of the real life Marilyn hung inside, which "Roslyn" refers to as "just some old pictures of me." Also the scene of M.M. & Gable, as they awaken one morning, and she is seen nude from the back, is one Marilyn fought for, wanting her breast, which was visible in the rushes, kept in the final film. This was unheard of at that time, and was cut out of the final print. At the time, M.M. commented: "I love to do things the censors won't pass, after all, what are we here for, just to stand around and let it pass us by?... Gradually, they'll let down the censorship, sadly, probably not in my lifetime ", a prophetic comment from a woman who was ahead of her time. Though she drove John Houston to distraction during the filming, he years later commented: "Marilyn was as fine an actress as any I ever worked with...Read more ›
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77 of 82 people found the following review helpful By Michael C. Smith VINE VOICE on August 1, 2003
Format: DVD
This once nearly forgotten movie, the last film of Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe is now coming forward in the lexicon of film history as an underrated gem. Universally misunderstood for the most part at the time it came out it is clear now that this film was at least five of six years ahead of it's time. It fits in more comfortably with films of the late 60's and early 70's.
The screenplay by Miller is one of his most striking works. A story of a group of people lost in the wide expanse of the West in search of the discarded souls of their misspent lives. The film's beautiful cinematography by Russell Metty stands out as superb artistry at the demise of the black and white era. It shimmers with the silver of the deep expanse of the desert and the flat grays and blacks of the distant mountains upon which the last act of the story plays. The music by Alex North is among his best work and gives a savage punch to the aerial scenes and the round up at the end of the wild mustangs.
Montgomery Clift, by now sliding into the last years of his life is touching in his performance of Perce. His broken cowboy with the broken heart is almost painful to watch. His phone call home to his mother is among some of his best work. Eli Wallach gives a strong deeply moving portrait of Guido who has lost his wife, his way, and his humanity. He shines in his scene with Monroe where he asks her to save him. When she can't to at least say "Hello Guido".
Thelma Ritter is, well, Thelma Ritter in yet another of her excellent character roles. Ritter is the master of the one line wisecrack but here as Isobel she laces the cracks with an underlying sadness and vulnerability.
As Gay Langland, Clark Gable gives what I consider to be the best performance of his career.
Read more ›
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 9, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
THE MISFITS is a winner.Despite the fact that it failed at the box-office,and dramatic behind-the-scenes conflicts,this film is a good drama movie. The script of this film was written by Monroe`s then-husband,playwright Arthur Miller,as a "valentine" to her following the sad miscarriage of their child.This time,the Godess plays a role you have never seen her play in her earlier pictures.In THE MISFITS,she`s Roslyn Tabor,a divorcé who joins a group of cowboys.Roslyn was based on Marilyn.One of the cowboys is Gay Laughland,played to perfection by Clark Gable.Gay is a free spirited man who lives life by the minute and nothing gets in his way of pleasure.Also in the gang are two men (Montgomery Clift and Eli Wallach)who have hidden pains from their past.The Nevada scenery is breathtaking and the musical score by Alex North is very good.Marilyn Monroe fans should know that this film added many elements from Marilyn`s troubled reality such as references about her mother.In the film,Gay helps Roslyn figure out what demons are killing her and what is she running away from.We can see that Monroe did a good job with this film and fully applied the Strasbergian Method to it`s fullest when it came to inner-examination.This film should please any MM fan,and any moviegoer that enjoys a good piece of drama.This was the last film for two movie stars that offered so much to American cinema:the king and queen of Hollywood(Gable and Monroe).
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37 of 42 people found the following review helpful By D. Hartley on February 2, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
I have always suspected that there was more autobiography in screenwriter Arthur Miller's "gift" to then-wife Marilyn Monroe than even he may have realized at the time. Miller's (typically) depressing assortment of beautiful losers in "The Misfits" is rendered even more poignant by the real-life tragedies unfolding amongst the film's stars (Clark Gable's impending fatal heart attack; Monroe's suicide within a year; and Montgomery Clift's ongoing battles with alcoholism, mental instability and addiction to pain-killers). Morbid as this sounds,these factors probably "helped" Gable, Monroe and Clift to each give some of the most realistic and heartfelt performances of thier careers. Eli Wallach and Thelma Ritter (frequently overlooked for thier contributions to the movie) give equally skilled performances. A bit "stagey" at times, understandable with Miller's theater background. The irony of the movie's final shot, with Gable and Monroe gazing heavenward as they drive toward "that brightest star", is almost unbearably saddening, yet such a perfect swan song for two fine screen actors in (literally) thier final film scene. One of director John Huston's more absorbing dramas.
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