In and of itself, John Huston’s The Misfits, which opened today in 1961, is a solid but second-tier effort from the great director, dealing with the lives of fading cowboys in the Nevada desert. It’s better known as the last onscreen appearance of two cinematic legends: Clark Gable, who died just a few days after shooting completed, and Marilyn Monroe, who died 18 months after the movie opened. Monroe was married to the screenwriter, Arthur Miller, at the time, and their union slowly collapsed during the course of the shoot… a shoot that proved quite arduous for everyone involved.
Speaking of arduous, we’re also looking at Dario Argento’s Suspiria, which opened today in the director’s native Italy in 1977. Jessica Harper stars as an American dancer who travels to a prestigious European academy, only to learn that it’s a front for a coven of witches. Featuring the kind of bizarre set pieces and unsettling tone that made the director famous, it is, to quote Edgar Wright, “like a dream you’ve had when you’ve eaten too much cheese.” And I’m sorry: the new version just isn’t the same.