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Some Like It Hot October 20, 2006

Posted by Sai in English, Movies, Reviews.
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For a Billy Wilder movie, this one surprisingly starts off with a well shot chase sequence. Though there is a crime angle it still is a comedy. The movie is about two out of work musicians that need to dress as women and be part of an all-girl band to hide from some gangsters who are after them. Though the cross-dressing theme has been used quite a bit since, the movie still appeals today. The pace never drops and for a movie made in 1959, that is something.

The movie stars Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe. I love Jack Lemmon and I felt he steals the show here as far as the comedy is concerned. He is slightly over the top as required and just right for the part. His enthusiasm almost makes you believe that he really enjoys being a woman more than he really might have. My favorite scene in the movie is the one where Lemmon tells Curtis about the proposal from Osgood (played by Joe E. Brown), shaking a pair of maracas. And of course, the “nobody’s perfect” line at the end is the best way to finish the movie. Tony Curtis is good too and he lets Lemmon shine.

This is my first Marilyn Monroe movie and man is she HOT!!. There is something about her, a kind of innocent carelessness that makes it seem like she is unaware of her surroundings and that makes her all the more sexy. Her costumes (Orry-Kelly won an Oscar for costume design for both the men and the women) are brilliantly done and were definitely risqué (not just for a movie of that era but maybe even today). There is one scene where Wilder plays with the light falling on her body to tease the audience, as if her seductive allure wasn’t enough!

Like most of the films written by Billy Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond, this has some charmingly witty dialogue. The movie is a slapstick comedy, so it does have its share of improbable moments but you really don’t care about that when you are entertained like this. The movie was nominated for quite a few Oscars but lost to Ben Hur. Lemmon and Monroe did win the Golden Globes though (in the musical/comedy category).

This film was rated as the best comedy of all time by The American Film Institute. This is a very enjoyable comedy but I would rate Billy Wilder’s The Apartment (starring Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine) or The Fortune Cookie (starring Lemmon again with another comic genius, Walter Matthau) higher, especially because apart from the comedy, those movies also worked as satires that I really could identify with. Nevertheless, a pleasureable experience recommended to lovers of comedy.

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