In her personal library, she kept books written by Proust, Chejov and Lorca. She attended evening classes about Renaissance Poetry at Los Angeles University. And one of the things she kept repeating while filming was “I’m sure I can do it better.”
However, what is remembered of her is her striking sensuality, her doomed relationships and the night she sang “Happy Birthday” to the President of the US. Now the new Netflix film Blonde, intends to get us closer to the woman Marilyn Monroe really was behind the myth.
The first NC-17 (18+) Netflix film.
The most famous blond in Hollywood history, has always attracted the public’s attention (now and then). Her stunning physique, the power that fame apparently gave her and her seemingly naive personality captivated everyone who knew her, bot personally and on the screen. And all those traits build up a myth about a woman Joyce Carol Oates wrote about in the year 2000.
Now Andrew Dominik, the director of Blonde, takes Oates’ biographical novel and turns it into a film about a fictionalized life of Marilyn Monroe. But it hasn’t been easy. This project has had to face as many obstacles as Monroe herself did in her life.
Blonde had been rejected by several studios when the streaming platform finally bought the rights. The decision of casting Ana de Armas, a Cuban-Spanish actress, to play the role of this American rose its fair share of controversy. And once the filming was done the comments and questions did not stop.
Netflix’s decision to move the release date and arguments in the editing room for its “explicit content” were more than enough to keep the buzz alive. Finally the film was rated NC-17 (the adults-only label), something its director thinks “unfair”.
Marilyn is a sacred myth. And that it's not always a good thing.
Dominik himself believes that if the film was about any other public figure it wouldn’t had been as difficult to release. “The rating (…) is more of a political thing” he affirmed, and its censorship can only be understood because Marilyn is, somehow, a sacred myth in the American culture.
Marilyn, whose real name was Norma Jean, was much more than what Hollywood let us see. At least, she was more complex and human. And that is precisely what Blonde wants to shed some light on.
Maybe in her case the gap between the person and the character was too wide. A duality that, unfortunately, fractured her identity. Blonde premiers on Sept. 23, 2022.