THE PRINCE AND THE SHOWGIRL (1957) 

CAST
Laurence Olivier
Marilyn Monroe
Richard Wattis
Jeremy Spenser
Sybil Thorndike
David Horne
Daphne Anderson
Paul Hardwick
Jean Kent

DIRECTED BY
Anthony Bushell
Laurence Olivier
PURCHASE


Movie




Time: 117 Minutes
Rating: Not Rated
Genre: Romantic Comedy

SYNOPSIS: An American showgirl becomes entangled in political intrigue when the prince regent of a foreign country attempts to seduce her.

What starts out as a charming romp, co-starring what has to be one of classic cinema's oddest romantic pairings, ends about a half hour too late. It's certainly not the worst romantic comedy ever, but the quality of the story is vastly below the talent involved. Monroe was the bigger draw at the time and her sweetly silly performance is the only reason to watch this misguided effort. Besides being sex personified in a tight white dress, which gets somewhat tiresome as the film progresses, she is surprisingly smart, funny and endearing. There's just enough of a story to give the actors something useful to do, though not enough depth of character or heart to keep me interested.

When the Prince first meets the Showgirl, he is appalled and offended when the assumedly dim bulb rebuffs his "charming" self, like every girl should be overjoyed for the opportunity to be pawed over by a prince. Yet his pride eventually wears down after spending time with her, given her no-nonsense attitude to the situation. Monroe and Olivier were at the height of their careers, which is clearly why the studio threw them together and they make the most of what they're given, playing off one another's strengths wonderfully. Unfortunately, their drastically opposite acting styles - and the shallow roles they are given to play - fail to deliver any sexual chemistry, which really hurts the pic. When they're being funny, the film works, when romantic, not so much. Though the main problem with the film is its length. The whole political intrigue subplot is totally unnecessary and makes this lighthearted romance drag on and on way past the point of being fun. This could have been a real gem if they just stuck to their attempts at capturing love. Mainly for Monroe fans.



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"Better luck next time, only not with me, of course."

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