Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Marilyn Monroe - her secret

Marilyn Monroe (June 1, 1926 – August 5, 1962)

You clicked on this page. What is Marilyn's secret that makes you do so today?

If you Ask Men there probably is a broad consensus that there is no one else quite like her.

But where is the difference?

For there are plenty of other beautiful women out there in show business who impress men in powerful ways. There is something about Marilyn ... We men notice the difference but it is difficult to put in words. The matter becomes obvious immediately when someone attempts to "do Marilyn" by imitating her looks, voice, smile, walk or behaviour. Most men recognize the false Marilyn in sub-second, sigh quietly and loose interest in the copy-cat. Men keep dreaming about the real Marilyn and would willingly sell their cars to give her jewels, as Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friends (youTube).

Perhaps the most iconic image of Marilyn Monroe
From the movie poster for 1958 Seven Year Itch

For example, there have been numerous repeats of the iconic photo of Marilyn standing over the subway grate with her skirt billowing. The original photos were taken by Sam Shaw to promote the movie Seven Year Itch. None of the copycat attempts by other beautiful women have really worked despite of the fact that the fundamental idea - show some leg - is so simple. Because men still remember the original authentic Marilyn.

June 19, 2011 By Alan Duke, CNN
Marilyn Monroe wore the famed "Subway" dress in "The Seven-Year Itch."

Marilyn Monroe's white "subway" dress sold for more than $5.6 million in a Beverly Hills, California auction Saturday night in which bidders paid another $2.7 million for three other Monroe movie outfits.

It was the first in a series of auctions to sell the massive Hollywood history collection that singer, dancer and actress Debbie Reynolds accumulated over the past 50 years.

Collector Keya Morgan said Saturday's bids were "totally crazy, especially in this recession."

Bidding for the iconic ivory pleated dress Monroe wore in "The Seven Year Itch" was "totally magical," Morgan said.

My week with Marilyn (2011) was a serious attempt by director Simon Curtis to portray actress Michelle Williams as the real Marilyn. Much research was done in preparation. But it did not work at all. Michelle is not Marilyn despite of the similar dresses, make-up and hairstyle given to her. Already in the third week the movie had slipped down to seventh place in the charts and  will soon be forgotten.

In contrast to also this failure to imitate Marilyn, the dumb blonde in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953), How to Marry a Millionaire (1953) and The Seven Year Itch (1955) continues to attract new generations of viewers, male and female, after more than half a century has already passed. Some Like It Hot (1958) may be Marilyn's best movie not least because of the wonderful inspiration she got from the two masters of comedy with big hearts, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon.

Mister President
Christie's Auction House asking price for the Happy Birthday dress 
in 1999 lot55 was whopping 1,267,500 $

The seducing message of Marilyn's utterly sexy singing voice in Happy Birthday "Mister President" would put the classical Greek Seirenes in shame. Her call was totally irresistible to the Kennedy brothers despite of the direct warnings of one of the scariest characters in modern US history,  J. Edgar Hoover.

The youTube clip of the 1962 song has had almost nine million hits by today 2012.

And God created woman
We can not deny it. There is something in Marilyn that attracts men.

What makes her so different of all the other beautiful women in show-business? It is not just the powerful American media and marketing hype nor the basic male lust attracted by a powerful female sex symbol.

We really have no problem understanding the total seduction of seventeen thousand horny GI's in Korea during her performance in February 1954 (youTube). But trust me, maybe some but certainly not all of these men were just aroused by her sexy dance, wonderful black dress, blond hair and lovely voice. There is more in her and many of the troops were married men, fathers and perhaps even grandfathers.

Without her bodily charms Marilyn would not be Marilyn. But that is not the whole story.

Venus de Milo
Photo Lizzy Kalliga

An unknown Greek artist once created the ideal woman properly called by the goddess of love, Venus or Aphrodite. Millions admire the statue in Louvre, Paris. In my opinion, the figure of Marilyn Monroe stands favourably in comparison with that classic masterpiece. But there are many other stunning women, as well, who nevertheless do not have the magic effect of Marilyn has on men.

Brigitte Bardot 

We might get some insight into her secret charm by comparing Marilyn to her French contemporary Brigitte Bardot. Both are world famed beauties but there is a fundamental difference between the two.

Let me explain.

Brigitte Bardot makes the impression of a perfect cat woman who is very comfortable in her skin and fully in control of her life and relationships. In comparison, Marilyn reflects the once poor desolate Norma Jeane Baker who never really recovered from her childhood and always had that baby face men so love in women.

Norma Jeane Baker

Brigitte is commanding, powerful, sure of herself and in this way somewhat scary for men. Marilyn knew better...

I need you
"I need you. I was made for you. I am your perfect companion. Make me happy."

The call of an apparently dump (easy), sad (why did you choose that nerd Arthur Miller? I am much more fun), tragic (let me save you from this bad world) and utterly sweet (oh Marilyn, when do you strip that jumper) is a combination of looks, behaviour, voice, face, eyes, walk... everything.

Very few women have her looks and a cold successful in command beauty like Brigitte Bardot cannot compete with this fragile being that just waits for the saviour with strong hands and pure innocent heart.

Eve created as more than a helper for Adam
And the LORD God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper meet for him."

And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air, and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them; and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found a helper meet for him.

And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof.

And the rib which the LORD God had taken from man, made He a woman and brought her unto the man.

And Adam said, "This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man."

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be one flesh.

And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
Genesis 2:18-25 KJ21

The Secret of Marilyn Monroe
In my opinion the secret of the extraordinary power of Marilyn over the hearts and minds of men is her understanding of the Biblical story that tells that God created woman for man.

And the need of us men to be the protectors, saviours, heroes, knights, fathers, guides and heads of family rescuing the suffering poor girl from the predators.

Of course, the Biblical message that women were created for men goes against every cell in the feminist who has been fighting so hard for the equality of woman to be understood as a stand-alone product.

In some way Brigitte Bardot is such a modern woman doing what she pleases with men.

Instead, Marilyn acted to perfection the female role of being a rather dump blond created for men.

She was not dump at all but highly intelligent and knew how to put on that magic Marilyn when cameras began to roll.

The role of a helpless dame in distress of life needing someone to rescue her did not make her happy, however, for she never found that Adam for whom she was created to become one flesh.

She only met men from simple workers to Mafia and highest political circles in the USA, who all took advantage of her. (Except for Arthur; I think there is more to this relationship than just selfishness.)

But also her tragic death at the young age of 36 without a husband, without children left her story unfinished in such a way that the legend of Marilyn could be born and she has become one of the powerful symbols of modern times.

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