Night Swimming

Something’s Got to Give is the ill-fated final film from Marilyn Monroe. Normally I wouldn’t review an unfinished film, but there’s just enough footage to make a comprehensible short. Something’s Got to Give was doomed from the start. Marilyn Monroe dealt with a never-ending series of problems ranging from health issues, script frustration, prior commitments to President Kennedy, and overall unavailability. Her final shooting day was her birthday (which is also my birthday) June 1st 1962. She was fired by an increasingly frustrated studio and director George Cukor.

Other well known actresses were considered, but Marilyn Monroe is irreplaceable. By the time she was rehired, Monroe tragically passed away leaving Something’s Got to Give forever incomplete. The story was intended to be a remake of the 1940 film My Favorite Wife before it was later reworked as the 1963 film Move Over, Darling with a different cast. Monroe would’ve been Ellen Arden who was stuck on an island and declared dead by her husband Nick who remarries Bianca. Dean Martin was committed enough to perform the title song. Cyd Charisse would’ve been a good foil for Monroe.

Other limited characters include Ellen’s hunky fellow island inhabitant, her 2 children who don’t recognize her, an angry judge, Bianca’s psychiatrist, a hapless shoe salesmen, and an insurance agent who gets an eyeful. The most iconic scene would’ve been Monroe swimming naked in a pool. I know Monroe posed for Playboy, but the surprisingly risque moment would’ve been the first major Hollywood nude scene. It’s a shame Marilyn’s entire fun loving performance was never seen. Something’s Got to Give could’ve been an instant classic.

Somethings Got to Give

Ellen emerges from the pool

P.S. I’ve supplied the full 37 minute restoration underneath.

2 thoughts on “Night Swimming

  1. This is definitely one of those “I really wish it had been finished” unfinished films. Granted there are many more out there, but that it’s the last ever material Marilyn Monroe shot makes it all the more special and important. I saw some of the footage years ago on TV, and remember thinking it was good. I remember reading she was pretty close with The Rat Pack since they hung around with President Kennedy too. That whole story is too complex to go into here, but it is interesting non-the-less.

    Liked by 1 person

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