Last Sunday, my wife and I sat down to watch "The Misfits."
It's a 1961 movie starring Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Montgomery Clift and Eli Wallach, which means it predates me by a few years. I had read about it and knew that it was considered one of Monroe's finest performances, despite the demons she was battling during the filming.
It brings some unlikely characters together in an unlikely story with a strong animal rights message decades before those themes came into vogue. The legendary John Huston directed the movie.
But the entire movie, filmed in the scorching heat of the Nevada desert, has a sad backstory.
Monroe's marriage to writer Arthur Miller was falling apart as the movie was being filmed, a fact that made production more awkward because Miller was rewriting the original short story that the screenplay was based upon.
The changes in Gable's voice may have hinted at the lung cancer he was battling that could have brought on the heart attack that killed him.
The movie came out on Feb. 1, 1961. Gable had died at age 59 on Nov. 16, 1960, just 12 days after production wrapped. Monroe died on Aug. 5, 1962 at age 36. Clift passed on July 22, 1966 at age 45.
The sole survivor of the 52-year-old movie is Wallach, who is now 97.
It was the last of Monroe's 29 films that she completed and the last of Gable's 67 releases that made it into theatres.
Clift would receive three Academy Award nominations for his work in Judgment At Nuremberg that also came out in 1961 but he only had three films left.
Misfits was well-received by critics but largely ignored at the time by movie-goers.
The old black and white movies have their own feel. The shots tend to be longer and the pacing is different. Even the performances have a different feel.
Even with the big stars involved, it's hard to take your eyes off Monroe.
At this point she's become more of a legend than a real person. I realize that she's acting but it's fascinating just to watch her walk and her body racked by sobs in one scene as giant tears roll down her cheeks.
Strangely, in performance she became a real person to me.
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Rob Dalziel and our friends over at the Victoria Hospital Foundation deserve a big thank you for their work organizing the annual Dr. O.K. Hjertaas Golf Classic and subsequently raising more than $93,000. It was a fun event that allowed me to spend some time on the golf course with my fellow managers at the Daily Herald, John Morash, Mitzi Munro and Lorraine Brassard.
While a late bogey edged us out of contention for the top prize -- pushing us 23 strokes out of the lead -- we enjoyed every minute of it.
And for those of you keeping track, the sale of raffle tickets on the restored 1969 VW Bug painted in Saskatchewan Roughrider colours that you can see on display at Canadian Tire is now over.
The draw is on Sept. 6.
I should see if this long-suffering Manitoban can find some Blue Bomber souvenirs to add to the draw. Do you think the Victoria Hospital Foundation would let me add a slightly used quarterback dressed in blue and gold to the prize?
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Speaking of ticket sales, there are not many left for the Clint Black show on Oct. 18 at 7:30 p.m. My folks will be back in Prince Albert for their third visit so I bought my tickets online the other night.
For the record, my favourite Clint Black tune is A Better Man, the first single he ever released back in 1989.
I also have a personal Clint Black story. I interviewed him backstage at Dauphin's Countryfest back in 2000. He had nice things to say about one of the best music festivals in Western Canada.
When we were done, we shook hands. This might be an odd thing to say about another fellow, but Clint Black has the softest hand I've ever shaken.
I guess country music success means that you can afford good moisturizers.
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The Daily Herald is hosting our first annual Best of P.A. awards.
You can follow the link below or go to the Daily Herald’s home page for the survey.
It’s a chance for local consumers to send out a thank you to the businesses that have earned your loyalty.
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I’m still giddy about my chance to ride in the B-17 Flying Fortress last Monday.
Tim Munro was my main contact with the Prairie Heritage Air Show Society and I want to thank him personally.
When my friend Harris May was named citizen of the year for 2012, one of the things they pointed to was his work with the Centennial of Flight airshow. I’m sure that Harris would be the first to tell you that one of the people lifting the heaviest load last summer was Tim Munro, who played a significant role in putting the event together.
Tim is also related to the first family of the Daily Herald -- the Munros, Terry, Mitzi and Megan -- so he earns extra points for that.
Thanks again Tim. It truly was a thrill and one of my favourite experiences in more than 26 years as a journalist.
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On a personal note, I was saddened to learn about the passing of one of my uncles last week. He was one of six boys on my father’s side of the family.
He lived life on his terms, spending much of it in the saddle of a horse working as a cowboy. In his early 70s, he was still looking after thousands of cattle.
His final years weren’t as kind so his passing had an element of tender mercy to it.
I wish our paths had crossed more over the years but he made a strong impression anyway.
Another cowboy is back on the range.
Perry Bergson is the Daily Herald’s managing editor. You can reach him at 765-1302 or by email at email@example.com