This latest wave of Marilyn Monroe feature films is really a collection of her early bit parts, as she's pretty much an incidental character in these films, enjoying just a handful of actual screen time. (The remaining Monroe 20th Century Fox flicks - "Scudda Hoo! Scudda Hay!" (1948), "Fireball" (1950), "O. Henry's Full House" (1952), and the Rock Hudson-narrated tribute, "Marilyn" (1963) - are still unreleased on DVD at the time of this writing.) Monroe's connection with these little films - more B+ features, shot very economically on studio lots - ultimately rescue works by noted screenwriters that wouldn't normally enjoy much priority in a studio's busy DVD schedule.
"We're Not Married," an anthology-styled film, pairs Monroe with David Wayne, her subsequent co-star in "As Young As You Feel, and "How To Marry A Millionaire." Our nascent blonde bombshell plays a touring beauty queen, while apron-wearing hubby Wayne is stuck at home, house cleaning, & looking after their infant. It's a cute, albeit brief segment, and the original trailer, archived on the disc, ends with a wedding scene that was cut from the final film.
Written by veteran writer/producer Nunnally Johnson (from a story by Gina Kaus & Jay Dratler), the other tales in "Married" include Eve Arden and Paul Douglas as a tired couple, with Douglas lapsing into a lurid dream-state when he discovers his marriage ain't legal; a befuddled Louis Calhern finds his own marriage notification of great value when gold-digger Zsa Zsa Gabor is about to bleed him dry in a divorce suit; AWOL G.I. Eddie Bracken rushes to get re-married so Mitzi Gaynor's unborn child is legitimate; and Ginger Rogers & genuine radio comedian Fred Allen star as America's most popular married couple on network radio, with their off-air feuding serving as a particularly acidic (and hysterical) satire on the pervasiveness of radio advertising.
Like the other three entries in this third Monroe wave, the source print's in very good condition, and the transfer has good gray levels, and deep blacks. Each film relies heavily on dialogue, so the new pseudo-stereo mix isn't that different from the original mono track.
Note: Trailers for “All About Eve,” “As Young As You Feel,” “Bus Stop,” “Don't Bother To Knock,” “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,” “How To Marry A Millionaire,” “Let's Make It Legal,” “Let's Make Love” “Love Nest,” “Monkey Business,” “Niagara,” “River Of No Return,” “The Seven Year Itch,” and “There's No Business Like Show Business” are also featured.
This 20th Century Fox title is available separately or as part of the Marilyn Monroe collection that includes “We're Not Married,” “Love Nest,” “As Young As You Feel,” and “Let's Make It Legal.”
© 2004 Mark R. Hasan