An American Affair

A coming-of-age story. Get out your handkies
Gretchen Mol, James Rebhorn and Cameron Bright
Directed by William Olsson

People cry a lot in William Olsson’s “An American Affair.” Every other shot is of someone with tears rolling down their cheeks. Catherine Caswell (Gretchen Moll), whose passing resemblance here with Marilyn Monroe is purely coincidental, cries because she’s been ditched by JFK for whom she’s never been more than one of many. (How did the man find time for his trysts? And wasn’t he supposed to be ... more >

Where have the Bettie Pages gone?

Revisiting an iconic personality

What is it about those fabulous mid-fifties icons? The three whose names instantly come to mind—James Dean, Marilyn Monroe, and the young Elvis—are as idiosyncratic as can be, unique, sans pareil, but remain evanescent. Stars from the previous decade were glamorous, talented, and they had heft. We love Cary Grant, Gregory Peck, Bette Davis or Katherine Hepburn but we don’t feel sorry for ... more >