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Niagara (Full Screen)

Marilyn Monroe , Joseph Cotten , Henry Hathaway    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
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A neatly enjoyable thriller in the pseudo-Hitchcock mode, Niagara offers great fun on a variety of levels. It has film noir themes (albeit in Technicolor), oodles of location shooting, and Freudian symbolism run amok. And, of course, it has Marilyn Monroe as an unbelievably ripe femme fatale: married to unstable hubby Joseph Cotten and stuck in a cabin at Niagara Falls, she plots a watery escape. Jean Peters (a future Mrs. Howard Hughes) and froggy husband Casey Adams are dragged into the intrigue during their delayed honeymoon. Veteran open-air director Henry Hathaway squeezes the most out of the spectacular scenery and the nail-biting climax, slowing down only for traveloguey interludes; the dialogue, pretty racy for 1953, comes from the civilized pen of producer-writer Charles Brackett (Billy Wilder's longtime partner). The baby-doll murmuring and lazy lounging in motel bed sheets is, well, all Marilyn. --Robert Horton

From the Back Cover

A vacationing couple, George and Rose Loomis (Joseph Cotten and Marilyn Monroe), rent a quaint bungalow at romantic Niagara Falls. But Rose and her lover plan to murder the unsuspecting George--in the falls! A dramatic departure from her more upbeat roles, Monroe's fascinating performance as the scheming murderess paints a powerfully dark portrait of human sexuality.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This is Marilyn Monroe's first starring role in a glorious Technicolor production. The technicolor film process seems a perfect match for Monroe; her ruby red lips and golden blonde hair are dazzling, and her skin tones are magnificent.
The plot puts Monroe in a dramatic role that allows her to chew up every scene. It's also the only film in her career (fortunately!) in which Monroe's character dies.
Niagara Falls are the spendiforous background in this drama, and Marilyn Monroe proves that she is probably the only star in cinema history that can eclipse such a natural phenomenon.
Marilyn absolutely sizzles on the screen when she performs her sensual rendition of the siren song "Kiss", wearing a dress "cut so low in front you can see her kneecaps" (as stated in the script). Indeed, "a girl has to start making plans when she's thirteen to wear a dress like that!" (Also from the script.)
Enjoy the magic of Marilyn Monroe in dazzling Technicolor in this great movie.
MMMmmmmmmarvelous Marilyn!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marilyn and Jean and Niagara- what a treat! March 19 2004
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
All reviews of this movie center on Monroe and her protuberant curves - and I agree, she and her instant fame deserve some of the credit. BUT Niagara Falls and Jean Peters also deserve some special mention here. Whereas Marilyn is sexy in most her scenes, Peters is charming, a good actress and quite beautiful...and then there is Niagara Falls. This torrent of water never looked better.
The acting. Marilyn in her first film as a "star" does okay - but as far as good acting is concerned it is Peters and Joseph Cotten that deserve better credit. Then I do agree with some reviews that Cassey Adams (aka Max Shoewalter) is miscast and a bit over the top in his acting. This role was to be played by another Fox contract player (I think Jeffrey Hunter) but Fox weanted someone funny in the role (big mistake!). And the role of Marilyn's lover was actually offered (enlarged, of course) to Tony Curtis.
The movie originally was planned for Anne Baxter in Peters's role and the role of Marilyn ironically was to be played by Peters. When Baxter got pregnant by her husband, Peters took over her role and Marilyn...well she became a "star". Even the movie's title song (which was to be "Night and Day") was changed for a song Marilyn portrayed in the movie -titled "Kiss". At any rate, it certainly is because of Marilyn that this has become a cult movie and a classic - But Peters, Cotten and Niagara Falls did help a lot in getting NIAGARA to achieve this status .
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Film Noir, Meet Marilyn Monroe." Jan. 31 2004
Marilyn Monroe was so good at playing the ditzy, sexy blond in upbeat comedies she became typecast in those sorts of roles. Niagara was one of her rare opportunities to show she was a fine dramatic actress, as well.
This is the story of two couples. Ray Cutler (Casey Adams) and wife Polly (Jean Peters) are taking their three-years-delayed honeymoon. George Loomis (Joseph Cotten) is a stressed-out, failed businessman and war veteran, his wife Rose (Monroe), the ex-barmaid plotting with a secret lover to kill her husband. All four characters wind up at the same hotel bordering Niagara Falls.
Things go wrong for Rose when George, proving surprisingly resilient, overcomes the lover, killing him instead, and, realizing his wife set him up, fakes his own death and begins stalking her. The Cutlers, especially Polly, are drawn into the drama when George, post-murder attempt, not realizing the Cutlers have been moved into his and Rose's old cabin, breaks in, intending to stab Rose, surprising Polly instead. Now Polly knows George is alive, but due to her overbearing, not-terribly-bright husband's interference, can't convince anyone else, specifically the police, of that fact.
Jean Peters and Joseph Cotten turn in respectable performances. Casey Adams is irritating - of course, that might be because his character is a moron. For pure movie magic, Niagara belongs to Marilyn. Whenever she's on-screen, the camera loves her. The standout scene has her in a killer, shocking pink dress that does an outstanding job of emphasizing what she has so much of. When Ray sees Rose, he asks Polly (a fresh-faced girl next door type if ever there was one), "Why don't you ever get a dress like that?" Her answer: "Listen, for a dress like that you've gotta start laying plans when you're about 13.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sensual, unforgettable Monroe. Made her a star. March 19 2004
One of the best projects Marilyn was associated with. I didn't like Niagara the first time i saw it, because i thought Marilyn was only good for comedy. But this role as the sensual, unfaithful wife of Joseph Cotton's (superbly performed) troubled war veteran is one of her most memorable roles. Pleanty of indelible Marilyn images come from here: Marilyn lying seemingly naked with legs apart under bed in hotel room, purple dress standing against cabin in grammophone scene, and the entire grammophone scene. Pleanty of location shooting made good use of the beautiful location, and the motif of the song the lovers sing to each other is a beautiful touch. The suspense develops well, but i suppose it depends on what you're expecting. I found it a great sensual thriller, but this movie lives and dies with Monroe. She is captivating in every scene, and looks stunning. The belltower climax of the movie is very fine indeed, one of the best scenes she ever played in. Nods to director Hathaway for camera placement in this scene.
Best line:
(Monroe has just done a sensual walk to the grammophone and had them put it on, then had a virtual standing orgasm listening to it, and spent an entire minute of close-up singing along to it, and the happy-go-lucky honeymooner character says to her)
Honeymooner: You seem to really like this song, Mrs Loomis."
Marilyn: "There isn't any other song," she says. But its all in her face - it always was. One of the best moments in her career.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Niagara [1953] [Blu-ray] [UK Release]
Niagara [1953] [Blu-ray] [UK Release] Marilyn Monroe sizzles in this tense, masterful thriller. While the seductive Rose Loomis [Marilyn Monroe] and her husband George [Joseph... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Andrew C. Miller
1.0 out of 5 stars Niagara
" How did this product meet my expectations " you ask me in an e-mail . I haven't received it yet -- 33 days after ordering .NOT my expectation . J.B.
Published 24 months ago by Boats
3.0 out of 5 stars MM sizzles to the detrimental of the rest of the movie
On a much delayed honeymoon, Ray and Polly Cutler stay at the Rainbow Cabins overlooking the falls. They seem to be a nice couple in contrast with the Loomises. Read more
Published on Jan. 27 2004 by Daniel J. Hamlow
5.0 out of 5 stars Childhood Imprint
This movie holds a special place in my heart, not because it is a great movie (it certainly is), not because of it's great director and not even because of Marilyn Monroe! Read more
Published on Jan. 16 2004 by Robert Pan
5.0 out of 5 stars Eleanor Parker's pulchritude
Eleanor Parker is just as beautiful as Monroe, but her breasts are smaller.
Watch Parker act up a storm in "Interrupted Melody", playing the polio-stricken opera diva Marjorie... Read more
Published on Dec 11 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars A fly in the amber ...
The scenery is magificent,as is the cinematography{I love recurring monolith-like shots of the bell tower}.Marylin is perfection in every sense of the word. Read more
Published on Sept. 1 2003 by Danny Malboeuf
5.0 out of 5 stars Neat little thriller
A movie that you can watch repetively and enjoy deserves 5 Stars anytime and "NIAGRA" is one of those movies. Read more
Published on Sept. 1 2003 by S. Doyle
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Marilyn's most powerful dramatic performances
1953 was basically the Year of Marilyn, and Niagara is one of the films that transformed her from a much-talked-about newcomer into a living legend. Read more
Published on July 25 2003 by Daniel Jolley
3.0 out of 5 stars "There IS no other song!"
So says Marilyn Monroe of "Kiss", the record she's brung out for the college kids to play on their portable record player. Read more
Published on Jan. 15 2003 by Linda McDonnell
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