Friday, March 8, 2013
Film Flick: Some Like It Hot
A film such as this wasn't easy to make either, if rumors are to be believed. Marilyn Monroe was so hard to work with Billy Wilder, the director, banned her from the film's wrap party. And who can blame him, when she threw tantrums in which she refused to come out of her trailer and when she sometimes required upwards of fifty takes to get simple lines like "Its me, Sugar" or "Where's the bourbon" right? Tom Curtis, joked that kissing his co-star was like kissing Hitler. Monroe was not the only one to get some heat though. Curtis managed to offend Holllywood veteran Cary Grant by mimicking his way of speaking when his role, Joe, pretended to be a millioniare.
But despite such struggles, the movie is well-done. When two poor musicians accidently witness the St. Valentine's Massacre in Chicago, it becomes imperative to get out of the Windy City double quick. Which is why they sacrifice dignity- and leg hair- to cross-dress and join an all-girls band. But after meeting the sexy singer in the band, laying low (and ladylike) might be harder than it first seemed.
The film deserves its revered place as number one comedey with its timing and slapstick. The two main characters play off one another perfectly, each taking turns at being the straight man, and hence keeping it from being too stereotypical. Monroe manages to make ditzy funny (even if it probably wasn't in real life!) and, the entire soundtrack works to punch up any moment's humor-potential. As funny as the entire film is though, it might all be considered build up for that last, memorable line. Additionally, Monroe is, unsurprisingly, sexy as can be and manages to give us several good vocal performances.
Despite its strengths though, I did have one cravat- Once part of this all-girls band, and having met a bombshell of a blonde, our heroes are presented with a problem: How does one woo when the lady in question thinks you are a her, not a him? This film's answer was to find out all her ideal qualities in a man and pretend to have them when you dress up as a (male) alter-ego. Many love stories have the theme of mistaken identity, and are quite well done. Something about this particular one rubbed me the wrong way, but that is a personal preference, one the humor of the film far out-weighs. So, prepare for some good laughs, kooky misunderstandings and some of Monroe's famous sex appeal and you'll find out why Some Like It Hot!