In 1953, Marilyn Monroe was getting married — on screen — a lot. First in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and then in How To Marry a Millionaire. While the films played around with the ideas of gold digging women trying to marry men for money, both films centered on the notion that the best laid schemes of mice and
men women are often run asunder by true love.
In Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Marilyn delivers the punch about men and women to a disapproving father who doesn’t want his son trapped by a gold digger. As Lorelei Lee, Marilyn says, “Don’t you know that a man being rich is like a girl being pretty? You wouldn’t marry a girl just because she’s pretty, but my goodness, doesn’t it help?”
But in How To Marry a Millionaire, it’s Lauren Bacall’s character who is taught about love.
As Schatze Page, Bacall and Cameron Mitchell (playing the role of Tom Brookman) share an attraction. But it’s an attraction Schatze doesn’t want. She knows from prior marital experience that marrying a “gas pump jockey” for love isn’t a good investment. By the end of the film, Schatze just can’t go through with her wedding to the older wealthy man — she loves Tom!
But the trick is on her, as Tom is uber wealthy — wealthier than the older man she left at the alter. This Schatze and her friends discover when they are eating at a diner and Tom pays the bill.
I’m guessing most of you know these films; they are not only classic, but wildly popular and shown on TV quite often. The main reason I write about these films is that a friend of mine is getting married and we’ve been talking wedding preparations. (Rather non-stop, actually; such is the way it goes with an engaged friend lol) During a recent discussion about wedding invitations, the subject of vintage wedding invites came up. When I showed her these invites with the classic cans tied to a car motif…
I swear, she looked just like the cast of How To Marry A Millionaire making their discovery at the dinner!
In a good way, I assure you! Such instant shock and delight!
(…Though we aren’t sure if they will pass with the Mother of The Groom yet. *sigh* Weddings are a lot of work! Neither of these films covered those issues. *wink*)
PS Weren’t sheer floral lace wedding dresses popular in 1953!