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I'm seeing posts that the new Marilyn Monroe movie Blonde is a huge downer, like only bringing up the worst parts of Marilyn's life. Is this true?

I don't know the full in's and out's about Marilyn's life, i've watched a documentary a couple of years ago so all i know are the basic's. I believe her life was very complicated and there was sad moments, but she would have obviously had happier moments too and i think it's weird if the movie only focuses on the bad parts.

Gyn's who watched it, what did you think?

I'm seeing posts that the new Marilyn Monroe movie Blonde is a huge downer, like only bringing up the worst parts of Marilyn's life. Is this true? I don't know the full in's and out's about Marilyn's life, i've watched a documentary a couple of years ago so all i know are the basic's. I believe her life was very complicated and there was sad moments, but she would have obviously had happier moments too and i think it's weird if the movie only focuses on the bad parts. Gyn's who watched it, what did you think?

24 comments

I'd urge others to boycott the movie, the rape scenes are entirely disgusting and clearly to serve male viewers' enjoyment of women's suffering

thank you. i have cPTSD and this is basically what i need to know when assessing whether i can watch something.

for years i could only watch kids stuff.

Check out unconsetingmedia.org, the website logs what movies/shows depict rape,violence etc. You can log in a a name and see if it's in their database. Myself I always wikipedia the plot beforehand, I don't care about spoilers, tired of being surprised with this crap.

there's a semi helpful website called doesthedogdie or something, and can help identify what triggers are in what movies or shows.

I hope it helps!!

thank you so much that looks awesome!!!

though i'm going to suggest some categories..... i can't believe the only occurences of 'misogyny' and 'women' are in relation to trans women. this sounds awful but i'm absolutely fine seeing men being violent to men but i have to be extremely careful about my mood if there might be violence against women.

I'm sorry you are dealing with this. Violence against women masked as sex is unfortunately too prevalent in movies - for me it adds nothing but destroy the integrity of the movie and everyone involved. As far as Blonde goes, it's really vile. I can recommend websites like parentalguide before watching a film, because they usually have warnings. Blonde isn't on there yet

That's awful :( I wasn't planning on watching but hearing the reviews i'm really not going to watch it. It sounds like showing the truly awful parts of her life because women suffering sells.... it's so fucked up. People need to respect real life people's stories especially women's.

It’s not even her life story. All the rape is vile fiction. Her being haunted by an abortion there is no evidence ever happened is vile too.

[–] Women2Women 9 points Edited

In the book the rapes were integral to what men and the male misogyny that rules hollywood, do to female "stars" and wanna bees. Harvey Weinstein's raping and abusing women is not fiction. Joyce Carol Oates was fictionalizing what has and is happening to women. JCO also did a lot of research before she wrote Blonde. MM, as is known, was sexually abused in foster care and throughout her life. Sexual abuse of females is so all pervasive, I have suffered it, as have most females, it is important to have it discussed in all ways, and brought to light in all its horror. In the book it is devastating and heartbreaking, but it is a painful truth and an integral part of the story. Watching and reading documentaries and books on MM reveals that much in the novel, Blonde, is true, or certainly based on truth. The novel is not exploitative of MM, it is full of compassion and deep sympathy for a life that was doomed by male violence, dominance and misogyny.

Thank you for this comment, my partner went to put it on, I asked them not to - the next day "I read the reviews, I'm glad we didn't watch it".

Yep. It’s fictional rape porn. Joyce Carol Oates is as much of an asshole as Dominik is, for the record.

Haven't seen it, or read the book, but I don't think it's possible to make an accurate account of Marilyn Monroe's life a happy one. Take the dick-pandering glamour away, and you're left with a very lonely woman who was smarter than the ditzy characters she was expected to play on screen and off it, drowning in male lust towards her without a lifeline in sight, drowning in an addiction that made her unemployable at the height of her fame, who died young, alone, choking to death on her own vomit.

Joyce Carol Oates using someone else's actual life to create a work of fiction is a problem. There are people who will think it is biographical when it is not.

I didn't watch it. But I caught a review. And the male reviewer was put off by all the gratitutitous sex scenes and said they were a stain on an otherwise well done film.

Haven't watched it yet. But highly recommend all read Joyce Carol Oates novel, Blonde, on which the movie is based. It is a great american novel, IMO, totally feminist and a heartbreaking fictionalized portrait, but using many facts. The movie may be dark and a downer because it is a portrait of a smart woman, coming from a sad and lonely childhood, who is used and abused by a misogynist industry, hollywood and media, and most of the men in her life. The story the novel tells is beautifully told, devastating, yes, but an important one for women. A painful truth that needs constant exposing.

[–] SecondSkin 4 points Edited

I have very mixed feelings about the book, and definitely wouldn’t think it would work as a movie no matter how it was adapted (plenty of books shouldn’t be movies).

JCO is a skilled writer, who pulls the reader into the internal narrative of a girl, then woman, desperately trying to survive continual sexual abuse and never ending misogyny, while still trying to hope she can keep her head above water. It is a great portrayal of Jennifer Freyds betrayal trauma blindness, where simply to survive the victim must prioritise the attachment to the perpetrators. And to prioritise the attachment, the victim needs to deny the reality of the sexual violence, rationalise it, romanticise it, blame themselves for causing it, or out right forget it.

It’s a never ending stream of sexual abuse and rape, that she’s describing to herself as love, or men’s sexual appetite, or her fault.

Which is very real. In that I went through the csa/rape when young, and then misogyny and objectification/‘lower level’ sexual assault as a teen. I very much identify with her inner rhetoric about the victimisation she is subjected to by men (up until I was an adult, I went to therapy and learned to change my inner justification).

So I think it’s a very real portrayal of how female socialisation influences the experience of being a victim when female. Not just being victimised by men, but being a victim in a world where the day after this victimisation we then get cat called on the street, or have to look cute and sexy for men to get a job, or a husband, and so on. It illustrates the suffocating feel of the relentless misogyny women are trapped by. I read it feeling very much in the moment with her, because here was my experience in words!!

But I was 20 I think when I read it first.

When I picked it up again years later I felt sick trying to read through her internal monologue of sexual assault as love, or rape rationalised as a job interview. And the suffocating spiralling decent to her death didn’t feel like insightful revelation into an experience I had thought I lived in isolation up until my first read of it. Instead I felt a mix of revulsion and horror at how at ease JCO seemed while illustrating a grotesque portrayal of a women being used by men. On a second read it almost seemed like JCO came across gleeful when detailing the gratuitously porny descriptors of her appearance, she seemed thrilled to be ‘illuminating’ the teasing, little girlish, almost fetishistic, longing for a daddy figure. It seemed like a repugnant characterisation of self loathing as if it were a lusty fantasy.

On a second time read, the book came across like glamorisation of being victimised. And what had felt first time round like heart wrenching loneliness and despair and desperation, seemed like an irritating brushing aside of the real damage caused to women by men. Like an irritating footnote in the pulpy porny starring role of rape fantasy.

I don’t really know how to reconcile how these two extremes felt, because I see how both felt so real and true upon the first and then second read.

But there’s certainly no way to make this book into a film without it being rape porn. Imho.

Not just being victimised by men, but being a victim in a world where the day after this victimisation we then get cat called on the street, or have to look cute and sexy for men to get a job, or a husband, and so on. It illustrates the suffocating feel of the relentless misogyny women are trapped by. I read it feeling very much in the moment with her, because here was my experience in words

This is very powerful, sister.

I haven't seen it but I've read the book, which is unrelentingly grim in a gossipy prurient sort of way.