We will view Simon Curtis’ 2011 biographical film “My life with Marilyn” -- nominated for best actress (Michelle Williams) and supporting actor (Kenneth Branagh). Dr. Alain J.-J. Cohen, Advanced Candidate at SDPC & Professor of Film Studies and Comparative Literature at UCSD, will lead the discussion.
In 1955, acting coach Lee Strasberg recommended that Monroe undergo psychoanalysis to tap into her "explosive energy." The movie "Prince and the showgirl" – was made in 1957. She saw her second analyst, Ralph Greenson in 1960, who described Marilyn as a 'perpetual orphan'. She was hospitalized in 1960 after complaints of hearing voices and in 1961 after threatening suicide. Greenson then decided that neither psychoanalysis nor medications worked for Marilyn and decided that she would spend time with Greenson’s family with the rationale that she needed the environment that she had lacked as a child and to give her somewhere to return to in order to alleviate her separation anxiety.
In his paper, Dr. Cohen compared Oliver Stone's version of JFK's assassination with Ralph Greenson's confidential statement about MM's death. (Both the filmmaker and the analyst seem to share an inclination for some over interpretation. To be discussed: conspiratory theories have a positive effect as they keep alive the memories of our "heroes", and would not be deleterious were it not for the lethal effect of idealization.)
* AJJC: "Oliver Stone's JFK and Ralph Greenson's Psychoanalysis of Marilyn. Three Theses on the Synergy between History and Mythology." In M. Stokes & G. Menegaldo (eds), Cinema and History, Paris, Michel Houdiard, 333-346.