Saturday, March 31, 2012

The Seven Year Itch 1955 and Kiss Me Stupid 1964

On a close friend’s recommendation I decided to take another look at Billy Wilder’s The Seven year Itch. I've always had problems with this film, mainly because I find Tom Ewell to be so unattractive and well almost repulsive. I know he's suppose to represent the ordinary every man, but no matter how far I stretch my imagination I cannot ever see Marilyn giving this guy a tumble, in spite of his air conditioning. The few brief exterior scenes of a lost New York City, the third ave el, the interior of the lost Penn Station and some of the 50's period décor held my attention, but the famous skirt flying scene was slashed almost to smithereens by the censors, and I disliked all those annoying fantasy inserts and monologues. Still there are some pleasures to be had from this film and that is mostly due to Monroe who is delicious and not surprisingly gives a wonderful performance. The other Wilder bomb I saw for the first time was the lecherous and lewd “Kiss Me Stupid”, that starred that other 50’s blonde bombshell Kim Novak who gives a really bad performance and the casting of Dean Martin playing himself may have looked cute and witty on paper, but on film it’s a painful experience. There are some nice bits by Barbara Pepper, Doro Merande and Alice Pearce but not enough to make the movie worthwhile. This one made me scratch my head and wonder why it was ever made.


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