The Misfits

The Misfits ★★★★

Star Spangled February: Nevada.

I absolutely and whole heartedly loved the first hour of The Misfits, but after that the script starts revealing it's flaws.
There's a lot of underlying themes, and some of them unfortunately come from knowing the fates of almost all involved.
It's Gable and Monroe's final film, and Clift didn't do anything of notice after this either. Miller's divorcing Monroe, herself playing a recent divorcè here. Huston wasn't in the best place either, so it's really a wonder how they managed to get it together in such a way that The Misfits still is a great film.

Monroe looks a bit weathered, but it actually helps her appearance, and makes her something other than a pin-up. She does struggle with how to naturally convey real emotions sometimes, but it's as fine a performance as I've seen from her, with her scenes with Thelma Ritter in the first half a real treat. Too bad they didn't know how to continue their relationship, and just toss Ritter to the side in bizarre fashion.

The three male misfits (Gable, Wallach and Clift) are all very good (duh) as cowboys out of time, especially Gable, representing old Hollywood's clash with the new ways, personified in real life by Clift et al. The gruelling production took that much of a toll on Gable, he "prophesied" his own demise, and left this mortal coil, from a heart attack, directly after wrapping up shooting the film.
Eli Wallach has always had this menacing look in his eyes, just waiting to stare you down, and he gets to show it off a few times here, as the jealous Pilot.

A film of two halves perhaps, the latter being the weakest, it still makes somewhat up for it with the climactic hunting down of mustangs.

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