I watched two really great documentaries this week on HBO—“Ethel” and “Love, Marilyn.” I had been wanting to watch “Ethel” for a long while, and I’m so glad a finally did. What a wonderful woman and legacy. I look forward to the day someone does a movie on the love story of Ethel and Bobby Kennedy, because it just has to happen. It’s such a beautiful story about two such beautiful people.
What I really enjoyed about these two documentaries was that they were about two strong women, and strong in very different ways. Ethel, as the matriarch of America’s most famous family, she’s practically like the Queen Victoria of our country, minus the incestuous marriages and unions of her children and grandchildren. More than just having a rather large litter (eleven kids), she is a woman full of sass, strength, and love. She’s wonderful. This documentary sort of traces her life with Bobby’s, and how she herself was as much a political figure and influence as her husband was. Both of them seem like just such stand up people, as well as incredibly loving people. Her story, and their story, is inspiring. It truly is.
Then there’s Marilyn Monroe, who everyone remembers as a sex symbol and a tragic figure. However, people often overlook the incredibly sensitive, strong, and smart woman that she really was. She knew how to play the game as well as the creators of the game—the game that was “Hollywood.” This documentary was interesting in that several actresses, including Marissa Tomei, Evan Rachel Wood, Glenn Close, and several others help narrate the pages of her diary to help us paint a more tangible image and understanding of the icon. Beyond the plastic surgery and the dumb blonde characters she was oft casted as, she was truly an inspiring woman. She wore her tender heart on her sleeve, and saw the world through beautiful eyes.
There’s a lot to be learned from both women, and I’m grateful to both of them for being the women that they were/are. It’s important for us to see that strong women come in various shapes, sizes, and colors as well.
***Both these documentaries may be viewed on HBOGO.
BIG LOVE & HUGS