We Bought a Zoo
A widowed father played by Matt Damon moves to the South Californian country and purchases a zoo with his family
On Film4: 31 Aug 6:25PM
Sweet drama about a week in the life of a 3rd assistant director swept up in the crazy world of the world's most famous movie star, Marilyn Monroe (Michelle Williams)
Those who might have had doubts that intelligent, almost elfin talent Michelle Williams was the right person to bring to life that most voluptuous and famously (if not necessarily straightforwardly) ditzy and girlish mega-star Marilyn Monroe can rest easy. Twenty minutes in, you'll forget you're not watching Monroe herself. Yet it's not simply a bludgeoningly photoreal impersonation, more of an elegant impressionistic portrait.
It's not even her story, really - this the based-on-true-memoirs story of Colin Clark (Eddie Redmayne), an employee of Sir Laurence Olivier (Kenneth Branagh, enjoying himself), who runs away from his wealthy family to pursue a career in that business they call show. He's not exactly an orphan with a red and white spotted bindle on his back, but rather, the son of a wealthy businessman. No matter - the Old Etonian background comes in handy when Monroe takes a shine to him and wants to see the sights of Ye Olde England.
It's all beautifully shot, beautifully costumed, undemanding stuff, with Williams performing at a level not demanded by the script and pulling it off with aplomb. But like Marilyn herself, this creamy confection is an illusion, which upon waking up to real life again, dissolves.
Perfectly innocuous and at times somewhat touching, My Week With Marilyn never insults your intelligence, even if it doesn't exactly stretch it.
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