The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe

Watch The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe

  • TV-MA
  • 2015
  • 1 Season
  • 6.8  (1,866)

The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe is a two-part American miniseries that aired in 2015 on A&E Television Networks. The show is based on the book of the same name by J. Randy Taraborrelli, which details the life of Marilyn Monroe, a troubled and iconic actress known for her beauty, talent, and mysterious personal life. The series stars Susan Sarandon as Marilyn's mother, Gladys, Kelli Garner as Marilyn, and Embeth Davidtz as Marilyn's foster mother, Grace McKee.

The first part of the series focuses on Marilyn's early life, from her difficult childhood with her mentally unstable mother, Gladys (Sarandon), who was often institutionalized, to her foster homes and eventual move to Hollywood. The audience sees Marilyn's struggles with her own identity as a woman, her early sexual experiences, and her fraught relationships with her family members, including her half-sister, Bernice (Emily Watson) and her guardian, Grace (Davidtz).

The second part of the series delves deeper into Marilyn's complex relationships with men, including her marriages to famous athletes and actors. The audience sees Marilyn's transformation from a struggling young actress to an iconic sex symbol, but also the toll it took on her personal life. The series portrays the rumors and scandals that surrounded Monroe throughout her career, including affairs with powerful men in Hollywood, her addiction to prescription drugs, and her rumored connection to the CIA.

Throughout the series, the audience is given an intimate and emotional look into Marilyn's life, exploring the reasons behind her troubled personality and the struggles she faced, both personally and professionally. The show also depicts the misogyny and sexism that were rampant in the entertainment industry during this era, showing how it affected Monroe and other women in Hollywood.

Kelli Garner delivers a stunning performance as Monroe, capturing her vulnerability, sexuality, and wit. Susan Sarandon offers a nuanced portrayal of Gladys, a woman struggling with mental illness and her own demons. Embeth Davidtz is quietly impressive as Grace, who remains a constant presence in Marilyn's life despite being out of the picture for most of her career.

The series is beautifully shot and produced, with lavish sets and costumes that transport the audience back to the glamour and excess of the golden age of Hollywood. The musical score is also exceptional, featuring songs from Monroe's era that add to the atmosphere of the show.

Overall, The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe is a moving and insightful look at one of the most iconic figures in American culture. It offers a fresh perspective on Monroe's life, treating her as a complex and nuanced individual, rather than a mere sex symbol or victim of circumstance. With strong performances from its lead actresses, stunning production values, and engrossing storytelling, this miniseries is a must-watch for anyone interested in the life and legacy of Marilyn Monroe.

The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (2 episodes). The series first aired on May 30, 2015.

The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe
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The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe Part 2
2. The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe Part 2
May 31, 2015
This 2-part Lifetime Original Movie continues. As Marilyn cares for her mother, her obsession with President John F. Kennedy drives her over the edge and, ultimately, into an insane asylum. Still, as Marilyn Monroe soldiers on, she gives the performance of her life, successfully hiding her darkest secrets from the world.
The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe Part 1
1. The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe Part 1
This 2-part Lifetime Original Movie begins with a portrait of a young Norma Jeane Mortenson.
Where to Watch The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe
The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe is available for streaming on the A&E Television Networks website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe on demand at Amazon Prime, Amazon, Vudu, Google Play and Apple TV.
  • Premiere Date
    May 30, 2015
  • IMDB Rating
    6.8  (1,866)