02/13/2016  
Take Me To The River on Blu-ray & DVD Feb 5Phantom From 10,000 Leagues (1956) on Blu-ray & DVD Jan 5Condemned on DVD & Blu-ray Jan 5Broad City: Season 2 on DVD Jan 5McHale's Navy: The Complete Series on DVD No 17Return to Sender on Blu-ray & DVD Sep 29The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

How the Grammys became cool (and what the Oscars can le...
'Game of Thrones' season 6 character photos released ...
Ryan Reynolds Says Having a Daughter was Dream Come Tru...
Oscars Nominees Luncheon Class Photo of 2016 Revealed ...
Bernie Sanders confirms: 'I am Larry David'...
Breaking News: James Corden to Host the 2016 Tony Award...
Marty Balin Remembers Paul Kantner: 'He and I Opened Ne...
House of Cards season 5 renewal announced, showrunner B...
Joseph Fiennes plays Michael Jackson in British TV 'roa...
Nate Parker's 'The Birth of a Nation' a powerful film...





Microsoft Store

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

20th Century Fox presents
The Seven Year Itch (1955)

"Oh, do you feel the breeze from the subway?"
- The Girl (Marilyn Monroe)

Review By: Jesse Shanks  
Published: May 09, 2001

Stars: Marilyn Monroe, Tom Ewell
Other Stars: Evelyn Keyes, Sonny Tufts, Robert Strauss, Oscar Homolka
Director: Billy Wilder

Manufacturer: DVCC
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nothing objectionable)
Run Time: 01h:44m:18s
Release Date: May 29, 2001
UPC: 024543014218
Genre: comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A AAB+ B+

DVD Review

The Seven Year Itch was a taboo-busting film in the late 1950s. It literally stated in the production code that no jokes about adultery could not be made in movies. The American Theater of that era was somewhat less censored and successful plays with mature themes were quickly made into horribly bowdlerized films. Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire and Cat On A Hot Tin Roof were both film sensations that were severely sanitized versions of the original plays. It is ironic that without the restrictions of content, these movies and plays would not be able to push up against those edges in presenting the risqué material to thrill the audience. We see this in our current era, as the walls of censorship have fallen, that movie-makers must go farther and farther to create sensational material.

Writer George Axelrod had these extra-heavy restrictions of the 1950s to work against and was able to use witty dialog and off-color situations to amuse and titillate the audience in the stage version of The Seven Year Itch. The play had a long and successful run on Broadway and even though it seemed a sure smash hit on the big screen, many studios passed on it because of potential production code problems. The biggest issue was that the story dealt with a humorous look at...adultery. This was a spelled out no-no for American movies.

Richard Sherman (Tom Ewell) has sent his wife and child off to Maine for the summer and now finds himself fantasizing about the potential things he could get himself into as a "summer bachelor". Suddenly, he is faced with the reality of a woman known only as the Girl (Marilyn Monroe), an aspiring actress who has sublet the apartment upstairs. Richard bumbles through a fog of fantasy, battling between his own loyalty to his wife and his natural desire for the beauty upstairs.

Tom Ewell is frozen in cinema time in one of THE most famous scenes in film history as he watches the skirt of the Girl billowing up as she stands astride the subway grate on a New York street. The filming of this scene was an international sensation as thousands, including Marilyn's then husband, baseball great Joe DiMaggio, gathered to watch. Film legend has Marilyn causing the need for take after take (a common difficulty in her performances) and repeating the need to blow her skirts up again and again. This infuriated DiMaggio and led to disagreement between the two and ultimately divorce after only nine months of marriage—before this movie was even completed. Ironically, the footage from that night was never used and the scene had to be recreated in the studio.

The Seven Year Itch is rooted in its time and serves as almost a museum piece describing a bygone era. Beneath the rigid social standards of those times we can see the cracks that are forming. This is due to the sly adaptation of the play and the intelligent direction of Billy Wilder. Wilder helmed many films that crossed swords with the rigidity of content standards like The Lost Weekend (alcoholism), Sunset Blvd. (the dark side of Hollywood) and Irma La Douce (prostitution). Wilder was nominated for 20 Academy® Awards in his career for writing and directing. However, he was not recognized for this project; amazingly, The Seven Year Itch did not get a single nomination!

This film contains another one of the essential Marilyn Monroe performances that defines what made her such a unique and memorable screen presence. Her charm and sensuality is palpable and electrifies the screen. Her execution of the seemingly dumb blonde who knows a lot more than she lets on is perfectly delightful.

Many greater films have had much less impact on our popular culture than The Seven Year Itch. The icon that is Marilyn Monroe lives and breathes, perfectly preserved in this performance. Sometimes, our icons don't live up to their legends when we actually examination the work on which their reputations are built. Happily, our respect for Marilyn as a movie star of the first rank is only enhanced here.

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: A

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio2.55:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: The restoration and transfer of the films in The Diamond Collection are consistently amazing. The Seven Year Itch is, however, a revelation. Anyone who has seen this film on video and on TV really has no idea what they have been missing. Gone are the yellowish, grainy, squeezed scenes and in their place are crisp, colorful, beautifully composed frames. There are few flaws, but in the Restoration Comparison, it is described and shown what a challenge restoration of this film was. Really, a fantastic job and it is simply a pleasure to watch this, finally, in an anamorphic widescreen presentation.

Image Transfer Grade: A

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoFrenchyes
DS 2.0Englishyes
Dolby Digital
3.0
Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: The sound is Dolby 3.0 Surround, stereo and mono. All three are very satisfactory. The content of The Seven Year Itch is mostly conversation of one type or another. One thing that has marked The Diamond Collection is the fine job done in mapping the characters in the stereo spectrum to their position in the visual frame. It really is very much like seeing and hearing the film for the first time.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 22 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, Spanish with remote access
2 Original Trailer(s)
5 Other Trailer(s) featuring The Diamond Collection, Bus Stop, How To Marry A Millionaire, There's No Business Like Show Business, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,
2 Deleted Scenes
1 Documentaries
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Movietone News: The Seven Year Itch has 'Sneak' Preview
  2. Restoration Comparison
  3. One Sheets
Extras Review: The Seven Year Itch contains the best set of extras in The Diamond Collection. There is the original theatrical trailer and the Spanish trailer which make for an interesting comparison. We have a short Movietone News (00m:30s) which gives us The Seven Year Itch has a "Sneak" Preview, showing a luminous Marilyn arriving for the preview of the film on the arm of Joe DiMaggio. Also included is a fine Back Story: The Seven Year Itch from AMC that tells the imminently fascinating story of the production of this film. Plus, there are even two deleted scenes: I won't say anything to ruin anyone's enjoyment, except that the deleted parts are slight but telling. Additionally, there are four promo sheets that perhaps say more about the horror of 1950s graphic design than anything else. These are the kind of extras that make special DVD collections a pleasure to own.

Extras Grade: B+

 

Final Comments

There is no doubt that The Seven Year Itch is a worthy addition to any DVD collection. The production values, the writing and the performances all add up to classic film entertainment. For fans of la Monroe—run, don't walk!

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

music, grammys, kendrick lamar, herbie hancock, joni mitchell, adele, 25, rihanna, anti, television, game of thrones, emilia clark, sophie turner, alfie allan, maisie williams, patrick malahide, max von sydow, hbo, movie, ryan reynolds, deadpool, blake lively, james, shrimpie, celebrity, academy awards class photo, beverly hilton, leonardo dicaprio, brie larson, sylvester stallone, lady gaga, bernie sanders, larry david, anderson cooper, cbs, tony awards, james corden, the broadway league and the american theatre wing, jefferson airplane, paul kantner, marty balin, doors, netflix, house of cards, president frank underwood, kevin spacey, robin wright, comedy, michael jackson, joseph fiennes, nate parker, the birth of a nation, sundance film festival, nat turner, d.w. griffiths, movies, academy awards show, chris rock, will smith, white chicks, icymi, matt damon, the martian, cheryl boone isaacs, iggy pop, josh homme, gardenia, the late show, stephen colbert, post pop depression, academy award controversy, charlotte rampling, 45 years, cheryl boone, glenn frey, eagles, don henley, post-beach boys california pop, disco, punk, rock and roll hall of fame, david bowie, alan rickman, cancer, cameron crowe, rolling stone, ride along 2, ice cube, kevin hart, buddy-cop action-comedy, debbie harry, chris stein, blondie, heros, ricky gervais, jeffrey tambor, mozart in the juncle, aziz ansari, mr. robot, quentin tarantino, china box office, $32.1 million, walt disney, lip sync battle, beyonce, channing tatum, jena dewan tatum, paula abdul, spike tv, premieres, shades of blue, jennifer lopez, nbc, angel from hell, my diet is better than yours, abc, 26, 7.44 million album sales, amc, the walking dead, frank darabont, glen mazzara, pbs, downton abbey season 6, gareth neame, sophie mcshera, paul copley, nichola burley, michelle dockery, the bachelor, bachelorette, ben higgins, alex michel, aaron buerge, andrew firestone, bob guiney, george r.r. martin, the winds of winter, song of ice and fire, kanye west, facts, bill cosby, steve harvey, miss universe, cosby show, george lucas, charlie rose, star wars: the force awakens, disney, star wars, harrison ford, mark hamill, carrie fisher, aging

On Facebook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store