Movie Reviews My Week With Marilyn
As they were when reviewing movies that starred Marilyn Monroe, critics betray no consensus in appraising the performance of Michelle Williams, who portrays Monroe in My Week with Marilyn . The plot of the movie doesn't matter, writes Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times . "What matters is the performance by Michelle Williams. She evokes so many Marilyns, public and private, real and make-believe. We didn't know Monroe, but we believe she must have been something like this. We're probably looking at one of this year's Oscar nominees." Indeed, any number of reviewers are predicting that Williams will receive an Oscar nomination for her portrayal. Among them is Claudia Puig who writes in USA Today that she disappears into the Monroe role. "Indeed, any number of reviewers are predicting that Williams will receive an Oscar nomination for her portrayal," she says. Rex Reed in the New York Observer calls it "incandescent." It takes a while to get used to, he concedes, since physically Williams bears little resemblance to Monroe, but, he writes, "Ms. Williams grows into the role like new skin. The illusion grows on you, like a lichen. Scene by scene, she melts into the picture. By the end, she is no longer an impostor; she's the real deal, inhabiting Marilyn's body, mind, heart and soul." Lou Lumenick in the New York Post calls her performance a "tour de force and foresees "Williams going home with an Oscar for playing an actress who was never even nominated." But as if to underline the deep divisions between critics over this movie, Kyle Smith, Lumenick's colleague at the New York Post , wrote up a separate review of the movie on his blog in which he called the movie "hokey" and Williams's performance something akin to "a nightclub impression; never for a moment did I forget that this was Williams aping Marilyn." Likewise Peter Howell in the Toronto Star concludes that Williams is unable "to summon Monroe's "sexual heat." He observes that she is "pretty but she's not sexy, making it hard to believe the astonished comments by characters in My Week with Marilyn that she's literally burning up the screen." Manohla Dargis in the New York Times is also unimpressed. "Ms. Williams tries her best, and sometimes that's almost enough. She's too thin for the role, more colorlessly complected than creamy, but she whispers and wobbles nicely," she writes.