This is a movie, anyone with a serious interest in cinema should own, especially older cinema. What a rare find. Three excellent actors, all in their last movie. Marilyn and Montgomery are screen-stealing. Marilyn gives what is argued to be her finest dramatic performance, and she sparkles as the troubled, slightly naive but streetwise Roslyn. And yet she still oozes charm in each scene.
Clift and Clarke are wonderful, Clarke giving his usual charming persona another round but more so in a more mature manner. He also does all his own stunts, which considering his age at the time is astounding (they say this later caused stress to his heart, which killed him not too long after-- the more cynical critics would say Marilyn killed him).
It's a slowburner, there's no doubt, but nonetheless it just hypnotises you into watching it. Miller's screenplay is comendable (and one must give kudos to Monroe for not giving off a whiff of the resent she felt at having to play a part she detested, considering it to be an insult, and you can see her point as Miller incorportated some personal things into the script, which any hardcore Monroe fan will no doubt notice).
This movie is just a charmer, it can't be described in any other way. I watch it over and over, and I think any fans of Clift, Monroe and Gable will do so also. See Clarke Gable in his own domaine, Monroe as you've never seen her before, and Clift, well, playing a part that one would think perhaps hit him close to home. Watch out for a great turn in by Thelma Ritter, her usual astute, sharp and always watchable self.
"One of the most important movies of the 1960s"?? ...I should think so. Beautiful acting, beautiful script, and just a beautiful, haunting movie.