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Gentlemen Prefer Blondes is a 1953 American musical comedy film based on the 1949 stage musical of the same name. It was directed by Howard Hawks and starred Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe.

The film follows Lorelei Lee (Monroe) and Dorothy Shaw (Russell), American showgirls and best friends. Lorelei has love for diamonds, believing that finding a rich husband is one of the few ways a lady can be successful money-wise. Dorothy, is searching for a different type of love, only attracted to men who are good looking physically fit.

This a charming and fun filled movie that never fails to bore. It is filled with memorable songs like “Bye Bye Bye,” “A Little Girl from Little Rock” and “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend.” Marilyn is pretty much typecast in her role as Lorelei Lee, being another ditsy high maintenance and flirty blonde. Jane Russell does far better in her role as Dorothy Shaw who could care less about jewels and money.

Arts of this film are over the top cheesy, especially when Lorelei and Dorothy flirt and several of the dance numbers, particularly the dance number with the men in swim trunks. The best scene is of course is “Diamond s Are a Girl’s Best Friend,” which inspired Madonna’s “Material Girl” video. Although Marilyn was not a great singer, dancer, or actress, she portrayed a]her typecast characters well. She had a sex appeal that people still talk about today. Jane Russell had a sex appeal too, even though she was not nearly as pretty as Monroe in my opinion, she was a better singer and actress as well.

This movie is filled with singing and dancing, flirting, drinking and mischief. Lorelei is accused of stealing a tiara, but it is revealed that it is a man that is in love with her who plots it out, also spying on her in her cabin and taking pictures. Dorothy pretends to be Lorelei in court and pretends to be in love with Malone the plotter of the crime. It is revealed that the man the real Lorelei is supposed to marry has the tiara and she is acquitted.

Yes, this is a total lady’s movie. Men may not like it, as it does talk about how women should marry a man only for their money or looks. The two main characters are almost always scene in fancy attire, as they are showgirls, so it does paint that a woman can only catch a man in a dress, which isn’t true at all. If the main characters would have been seen in at least two or three scenes without makeup or fancy attire, then that picture wouldn’t have been so negative. This is definitely not a feministic film, but it is girly to the max.

There is lots of flirting, gambling, smoking and drinking. There is also some revealing dresses, crime, cheating and lust. But overall, this is great movie musical that can be enjoyed for years to come. 13 & up 3.5/5

One thought on “Classic of the Week: Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953)

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