Marilyn Monroe Essay

1574 words - 6 pages

?How do you become a star?? This is a question asked by so many young women, hoping to capture the essence and attention of the fascinating, but sometimes cruel show business. The same question was racing through Norma Jeane?s mind as she was driving in the car to her very first movie set. At that time, no one expected a timid and shy 21 year old to become the blond sex goddess of the Twentieth Century (p.21). In the biography, Marilyn Monroe: a Life of the Actress, the author, Carl E. Rollyson, attempts to link the actress? career with her personal struggles to overcome isolation, depression and childhood fears. All of these insecurities played an important part in shaping the most popular American movie star of the 1950?s, Marilyn Monroe.Norma Jeane Mortensen was born in 1926 in Los Angeles to a very emotionally unstable mother. The man that her mother married was not Norma Jeane?s real father and the young girl always felt as though a fatherly figure was absent from her life. The relationship Norma Jeane had with her mother was also very far from normal. Mrs. Gladys Baker never responded to her child and she hated it when the girl would call her ?Mom? (p.25). There was no affection from Gladys and the little girl felt a void in her life for many years to come. She felt a part of her identity was missing due to the fact that her own mother would treat her as though an intruder (p.10). Norma Jeane spent most of her childhood going from one foster home to the next, never having a stability or acceptance by the adults in her life. That is the reason why she would spend days drowning in fantasies, because they were her escape and through them, her depleted identity could be replenished (p.13).Fantasies and desires of being in the spotlight gave Norma Jeane the drive to succeed. She started modeling for catalogs and magazines, but in reality, this was her first step to an acting career (p.20). Soon, Norma Jean was noticed by producers and actors who helped her pave the way to stardom. During that time she took the stage name of Marilyn Monroe and started out with small roles in movies that highlighted her sexual appeal, such as All About Eve and The Asphalt Jungle. With time, many of her roles became three dimensional and allowed her to grow in a way that she could not in the real world. In the everyday world around her, she felt as an outsider, unsure of how to deal with her insecurities. Some of Monroe?s most memorable performances came in the later years when she starred in The Seven Year Itch, River of No Return and Some Like It Hot.In his biography about Marilyn Monroe, Rollyson has a very worshipping attitude towards the actress. He envisions her not only as a goddess, but as a delicate creature that needs attention, care and love. She needs to be treated preciously, as though she is a porcelain doll. Rollyson sees Monroe as ?something else besides an object of male fantasy, or an airy symbol of a nature goddess? (p.78). She has a certain...

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