Hey, There Aren’t Any Robots in This! #3
An admission of guilt: I have seen this before. I actually own this film, but it’s good enough to be shared whenever and wherever possible. It deserved to top the AFI’s list of American comedies.
Set during prohibition, Some Like It Hot stars Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon as Joe and Jerry, two hard-luck jazz musicians that have their livelihoods injured when the speak-easy they work at is busted up by the cops. Desperate for another job, they try to borrow a car and in the process witness mob violence a la the Saint Valentines Day Massacre. Resorting to their only option for safety and money, the two dress up as women and join an all-girls band on their way to a stint at a Florida hotel. Enter Marilyn Monroe and you can guess what happens next… both Jerry and Joe, disguised as women (and as a bespectacled, gentle millionaire in Joe’s case), pine for her character Sugar Kane. Soon, the same mobsters unluckily end up at the same hotel for a “Friends of Italian Opera” convention, and the hijinks ensue.
I was introduced to this film in a high school history class and instantly loved it. Billy Wilder very ably co-wrote and directed this screwball comedy, proving his comedic skills after defining the film noir genre with Double Indemnity. As most comedies of the time, the dialogue is fast, rich, and damn funny. Tony Curtis shines as Joe, Josephine and Junior. Jack Lemmon is switches between the straight man and the comedian depending on where Sugar is, and this role cemented him as one of my favorite actors. Marilyn Monroe is great as the beautiful but not-so-great decision maker Sugar Kane. Honestly, she’s stunning. One of my favorite facts about the film is that the decision to shoot in black-and-white was because the makeup on the two stars had a horrible green tint. Bottom line: not life changing but a very enjoyable 2 hours. Plus, c’mon, Marilyn Monroe.