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Some Like It Hot

Billy Wilder

"One of Hollywood’s greatest comedies."

Billy Wilder’s cross-dressing caper had a troubled gestation. Marilyn Monroe was reportedly pregnant during filming, and, too distracted to remember her lines, she was indulged with cue cards and multiple retakes. She got little sympathy from the vain, spiteful Tony Curtis, who would declare that love scenes with Monroe were like “kissing Hitler”, though he would latterly seek to tone down that comment. Jack Lemmon only landed the role of Jerry/Daphne after Jerry Lewis baulked at the notion of wearing a frock. The film played badly to test audiences and was condemned by the Catholic Church, and yet it has survived to be celebrated as one of Hollywood’s greatest comedies and a crowning achievement for all concerned.

Indeed, it is a film that rewards repeated viewing, with a sense of humour that is more sophisticated than initially apparent and a killer pay-off that gets funnier every time.