DAVID BIANCULLI

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SOME LIKE IT HOT / MONKEY BUSINESS
December 25, 2018  | By David Bianculli

TCM, 8:00 p.m. ET

 

Okay, so it’s not a Christmas movie special – but any time you get a chance to watch a pair of movies featuring Marilyn Monroe, it’s a gift. And tonight, TCM presents, in prime time, two films in which Monroe shone with mesmerizing exuberance. In Some Like It Hot, from 1959, she’s the radiant star, throwing off equal measures of sex appeal and playful humor as a member of an all-girl music band – a band infiltrated by two musicians in drag (played by Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon), who adopt the ruse to avoid and evade gangsters trying to kill them. At 10 p.m. ET, the second movie is Monkey Business, filmed seven years earlier. It’s a Cary Grant comedy, in which he plays a stodgy professor, and Ginger Rogers his equally reserved wife – until they sample his newest laboratory concoction, which acts as an unrepressed youth serum of sorts. Monroe, on the brink of stardom, plays a youthful secretary, with no need of chemical enhancements to make her seem young and vibrant, tooling around with an artificially rejuvenated Grant. And since Curtis, in Some Like It Hot, spends some of his time doing a Cary Grant impression of sorts (pictured), this is a very compatible double feature.

 
 
 
 
 
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