HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Miserables, Les
Ritz, The
Patrick
Cemetery
Girls of the Sun
Princess and the Goblin, The
Skyfire
Upright
Incredible Kung Fu Mission
Dirty Cops
You Cannot Kill David Arquette
Leap of Faith: William Friedkin on The Exorcist
Son's Room, The
Evil Hits Evil
Agency
Blue My Mind
Thumbelina
Proxima
Aprile
Assassination Nation
Golden Key, The
Image Book, The
On Body and Soul
Unhinged
Eyewitness
Girlfriends
Danger Within
Rent-A-Pal
Battle in Outer Space
H-Man, The
Painted Bird, The
Finding Steve McQueen
Ropes
Five Easy Pieces
Peninsula
Nuclear
Queen of Hearts
Chinese Evil Technique
Primal
3 and a Half Kung Fu Girls
   
 
Newest Articles
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
The Butterfly Effect: Mothra on Blu-ray
Living Room Theatre: Play for Today Volume 1 on Blu-ray
Didn't He Do Well: The Bruce Forsyth Show on DVD
Blood Wedding: The Bride with White Hair on Blu-ray
The Inhuman Element: The Ladykillers on 4K UHD
As You Like It, Baby: Breathless on Blu-ray
Stargazing: Light Entertainment Rarities on DVD
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
   
 
  Misfits, The How Do You Find Your Way Back In The Dark?
Year: 1961
Director: John Huston
Stars: Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe, Montgomery Clift, Thelma Ritter, Eli Wallach, James Barton, Kevin McCarthy, Estelle Winwood
Genre: DramaBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 2 votes)
Review: Roslyn (Marilyn Monroe) is nervous today because this morning she has to visit court to attend the divorce procedure as she cannot go on with her marriage. However, her car, a gift from her husband (Kevin McCarthy), is too beaten up to drive so the mechanic from the garage she has sent for, Guido (Eli Wallach), helpfully drives Roslyn and her landlady companion Isabelle (Thelma Ritter) to the Reno courthouse. Of course, Roslyn being such an attractive woman Guido has designs on her, but she is used to that kind of attention even if she doesn't always enjoy it. Then she meets ageing cowboy Gay Langland (Clark Gable)...

The stories behind the filming of The Misfits would make a movie all on their own as it was a notoriously difficult time for all involved. All three main stars were nearing the end of their lives - indeed, Monroe and Gable died shortly after completing this - and Monroe was splitting up with her husband Arthur Miller who had written the screenplay for her, much to her indignation when she saw the character he wanted her to portray. Not only that, but Gable hated Wallach, and although he was understanding to Marilyn her utter lack of reliability had health repercussions, not least because he opted to perform his own stunts out of boredom waiting for her to turn up.

For this reason, many blamed Monroe for Gable's death days after the end of the filming, which can't have helped her mental health any: she was sacked from her next film, and the rest is tragic showbiz history. But The Misfits is tragic showbiz history too, and while there are films which are terrible endurance tests for all concerned both behind and in front of the camera yet are a dream to watch, here you can feel the tension. They all seem to be at breaking point, Roslyn especially as she frets and worries about just about every other character, as if she were born with one skin too few: this cannot help but wear you down.

This in a study of how masculinity, in its own allusions being a cowboy whose time has past, has become neutered by the modern world that no longer wants manly men and prefers the world of women to show the way. You could see this a predecessor to those westerns that arrived in the next decade where there was a clear change in the mood of the genre, but few felt as sorry for themselves as this film does. It doesn't quite reach the stage where you're exasperated with the people here, but it can test the patience as the tone shifts from portentous end of an era theorising to outright sentimentality, and lots of it.

All this and Montgomery Clift too, curiously cast as one of those manly men, but perhaps not too wide of the mark as a cowboy who is short of work and reduced, like Langland, to rodeo riding though in a far more self-destructive manner. Clift and Monroe were very respectful of one another, probably because they recognised kindred spirits in being two of the most psychologically messed up movie stars of all time, and their scenes together are the real highlights of the film, displaying a touching tenderness that goes beyond Miller's disappointing script. The most famous sequence comes in the final half hour where the three men take Roslyn (why on Earth did she go with them?!) to trap wild horses, not for any noble reason but because a dog food factory needs meat. It is here where the film becomes hardest to take, looking all too convincing as animal cruelty and unpalatable as metaphor, so while The Misfits has abundant historical interest, it's stodgy and over-inflated melodrama as a viewing experience. Music by Alex North.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 5537 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (1)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: