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Intimate Portrait: Divas of the Silver Screen Box Set [VHS]

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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(Feb 23, 1999)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Bette Davis, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe
  • Format: Box set, Black & White, Color, NTSC
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Number of tapes: 3
  • Studio: Unapix / a-Pix Ent.
  • VHS Release Date: February 23, 1999
  • Run Time: 180 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: 157523680X
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #688,293 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews


The Intimate Portrait: Divas of the Silver Screen boxed set contains Intimate Portrait: Bette Davis, Intimate Portrait: Audrey Hepburn, and Intimate Portrait: Marilyn Monroe:

Intimate Portrait: Bette Davis
Margo Channing's famous line, "Fasten your seatbelts--it's going to be a bumpy night," characterizes well the actress who played her in All About Eve, the inimitable Bette Davis. In fact, Davis's son comments in Lifetime's Intimate Portrait: Bette Davis that watching Margo Channing is much like watching Bette Davis.

Davis's film career spanned six decades, in which she starred in 112 films and received 10 Academy Award® nominations and two Oscars®. Yet her life was not always the charmed one of a starlet. Raised in a broken home, three times divorced and once widowed, and betrayed by her own daughter's scathing biography, Davis found solace in her work, which didn't always come easy for her. When she first approached Hollywood in 1930, the studios didn't know what to do with such an odd beauty. This portrait of the actress covers a lot of ground and occasionally leaves you wanting more. However, the snippets of an older Davis giving an interview on the Dick Cavett Show provide a wonderful glimpse into the regal queen of the screen.

Intimate Portrait: Audrey Hepburn
Arguably the most sophisticated and beautiful woman to ever grace the screen, Audrey Hepburn fell into acting by accident. Her dream to be a dancer was dashed--she'd be good, she was told, but never great--so she worked as an actress in Europe until William Wyler found her when looking for an unknown for his film Roman Holiday. Hence, a movie star was born.

Intimate Portraits: Audrey Hepburn looks at the life of this actress who epitomized glamour through interviews with many of the people in her life: her son; her last partner, actor Robert Wolders; friends and colleagues; and (with the use of old clips) with Hepburn herself. Together, they paint a picture of a reluctant star, a woman who really just wanted to be a wife and mother. Miscarriages and two failed marriages took their toll, but ultimately, Hepburn found her happiness later in life with Wolders and as the goodwill ambassador for UNICEF, where she finally found a purpose for her fame. From her childhood in wartime Belgium--where she raised funds for the resistance by dancing, until malnutrition forced her to stop--to the memorial foundation created after her death, Portrait briefly touches on all aspects of Hepburn's personal and professional life, providing insight into one of the most cherished actresses of all time.

Intimate Portrait: Marilyn Monroe
Born Norma Jean Baker and transformed into Marilyn Monroe, the unhappy life of the ultimate sex symbol is already familiar to most folks. This program tries to shed some more insight into her life, using film clips and interviews, most notably with James Dougherty, Monroe's first husband. Her entrance into the film world was a fluke--she was photographed working in a factory for a story on the war effort, which launched her modeling career. From there she created a persona that she wore for the world at large, although at home and among friends she remained Norma Jean.

Intimate Portrait: Marilyn Monroe attempts to cover the life of one of the most talked-about actresses of all time in less than an hour. While it does an admirable job of giving a general overview, the documentary doesn't succeed in the same way the Intimate Portrait programs about Audrey Hepburn and Bette Davis do. Perhaps the main detriment to this documentary is the lack of footage of Monroe speaking for herself. Also, much of the footage is used more than once, as if there weren't enough clips of Monroe for the whole tape. Finally, widely known controversies surrounding Monroe--such as her alleged involvement with the Kennedys--are never mentioned. Yet the interviews with her first husband help offset the problems, as the tidbits he offers are fresh and interesting, giving a clear picture of the early Norma Jean. --Jenny Brown

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- Marilyn Monroe
In this documentary you'll hear her first husband reflect on Norma Jeane Dougherty (Marilyn Monroe), and see many photos and clips from her career. It's sad she left us so early in her life.

- Audrey Hepburn
In this documentary you'll hear from Audrey's last companion Robert Wolders. (He was previously married to Merle Oberon.) Also, this documentary features many film clips, but touches quite heavily on her later humanitarian works with UNICEF.

- Bette Davis
It's Bette Davis, this documentary set is worth it all just to see the one about Bette. You'll see many of her friends, and her son Michael Merrill, reflecting on her as a star and as a person. Also, this documentary features a small clip of Ms. Davis on Good Morning America (1985), which is rarely seen.

Don't miss out on this set, however it is not 180m. This is a set of 3 "Intimate Portrait"'s about 45m. each. 135m., in all.
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