Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Review: Some Like It Hot (1959)

IMDb Synopsis: When two musicians witness a mob hit, they flee the state in an all female band disguised as women, but further complications set in.

I think everyone has an answer when asked what they consider to be funniest film ever made. Most people, along with the American Film Institute, choose Billy Wilder's Some Like It Hot. After finally watching it for the first time, I can see why.

Jack Lemmon is one of my favorite actors, one reason for this (and a lot of my other favorite actors) is because he's so versatile: he can do drama (Days of Wine and Roses) or comedy (The Apartment) and manage to be wonderful at both. It's quite obvious that he owns the film. I was really impressed by Tony Curtis, who also seems to have a lot of versatility- this was only a year after he played Sidney Falco in Sweet Smell of Success.
In my reviews of How to Marry a Millionaire and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, I mentioned I wasn't a Marilyn Monroe fan for several reasons. However, I liked her in both of those films, and I thought she was wonderful as Sugar Kane. She's genuinely funny- I found myself cracking up at her quite a few times (if you've seen the film, I'm sure you know why). I didn't think I'd ever say this about Monroe, but I'm honestly surprised she didn't get any kind of recognition from The Academy. Joe Brown was also a really great addition to the cast, and delivers the famous closing line (which I'll mention towards the end of this review).

Billy Wilder is probably my second favorite director of all time (the first being Hitchcock). He's directed so many of my favorites, and I love his work because it remains timeless. After sixty one years, Sunset Blvd is captivating, and The Major and the Minor is still hilarious. I feel the same way about Frank Capra- so many of his films still delight movie watchers today. Some Like It Hot is no different. It's one of those movies that's bound to make you laugh, no matter how many times you've seen it. For instance, the closing dialogue between Jack Lemmon and Joe Brown:

Jerry: Oh no you don't! Osgood, I'm gonna level with you. We can't get married at all. 
Osgood: Why not? 
Jerry: Well, in the first place, I'm not a natural blonde. 
Osgood: Doesn't matter. 
Jerry: I smoke! I smoke all the time! 
Osgood: I don't care. 
Jerry: Well, I have a terrible past. For three years now, I've been living with a saxophone player. 
Osgood: I forgive you. 
Jerry:  I can never have children! 
Osgood: We can adopt some. 
Jerry: But you don't understand, Osgood! 
[Finally gives up and pulls off his wig]
Jerry: Ohh... I'm a man! 
Osgood: Nobody's perfect! 

If it isn't obvious, I'm giving Some Like It Hot 5/5 stars.

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