The Netflix film Blonde recreates specific events in the life of Marilyn Monroe through a heavily fictionalized lens. The film combines the many ups and downs in her life, which have been a feast for the media and the public, who have devoured every little detail of her personal life. The film takes a very brutal and unflinching look at her story, which is at times very disturbing and makes you think about all the pain and suffering that hides in the shadow of the limelight. If you’re looking for more stories dealing with these kinds of topics, then we’ve put together a great list for you. Here are the movies similar to Blonde that you can watch on Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu and other streaming services.
8. Marilyn: The Untold Story (1980)
While Blonde relies more on its fictional elements to portray the harrowing story of Marilyn Monroe, Marilyn: The Untold Story is more straightforward in its depiction of the events of the superstar’s life. First off, the people in her life are called by their real names and not too many things are made up, allowing the viewer to marvel at every single aspect of Monroe’s life. The film begins with her childhood, her first marriage and the early years in which she worked as a model and created an image that would later define her presence on the big screen. The focus is on her meteoric rise in Hollywood and how she left Norma Jeane behind to become the Marilyn Monroe everyone came to love and admire.
7. The Blonde of That Year (1980)
Credit: Mario Caselli/Warner Bros.
Based on the novel Moviola by Garson Kanin, this TV movie gives an insight into Marilyn Monroe’s relationship with her agent Johnny Hyde. The film tells the story of the early days of Monroe’s career, when she was still Norma Jeane trying to figure out who she needed to be in order to break into Hollywood. The film explores her personal and professional relationship with Hyde and, while fictional in many aspects, gives the audience a glimpse of something not dealt with in Blonde.
6. Norma Jean and Marilyn (1996)
One of the most important things Blonde brings out about his protagonist is that the person she was in real life and the person she became on screen were two very different people. We often see Norma Jeane struggling to bring Marilyn to the fore, and at one point she begs her screen character not to let her down. Norma Jean and Marilyn go one step further and portray each as a different person, played by Ashley Judd and Mira Sorvino. Rather than exploring Monroe’s relationships with other people, the film explores her own complexities and inner struggles.
5. Frances (1982)
Frances follows the story of Frances Farmer, starring Jessica Lange. Starting from her childhood, the film focuses on her difficult upbringing, especially her relationship with her mother, which paves the way for a difficult future for her. While her short-lived career in Hollywood is also highlighted, the main focus of the story revolves around her deteriorating mental health, largely as she refuses to do the publicity stunts that are expected of her. It’s a tragic story that makes the viewer think about the price of fame, especially for young actresses.
Hollywood and fame have ruined the lives of many talented people, and Judy Garland’s tragic story owes much to it. With her role in The Wizard of Oz, Judy Garland became a Hollywood sensation. During this time, she is forced to take amphetamines and is mentally and physically abused from a young age. Judy, starring Renee Zellweger in her Oscar-winning role, takes the story in her 40s and illuminates her later years as she tries to revive her career.
3. Frida (2002)
Frida Kahlo is a celebrated cultural figure today, but she led a rather turbulent life during her lifetime. The film Frida, starring Salma Hayek, begins in 1925 with a serious accident that changes Kahlo’s life. The film sheds light on the early years of her artistic development, her complicated marriage to Diego Rivera, and her political views, which often got her into difficult situations. The focus of the story is Kahlo’s indomitable spirit and the fact that despite all her struggles, she lived her life on her own terms.
Credit: Pablo Larrain/Neon
Much like Marilyn Monroe, Princess Diana was a cultural icon, loved by people but falling victim to constant and intrusive media scrutiny that eventually claimed her life. While she was adored by the masses, her private life was always in turmoil, causing her much pain and heartbreak. In Spencer we see Diana at Christmas time in 1991, when her marriage to Prince (now King) Charles has grown cold and she is considering divorce. Focusing on the events of those few days, the film gives us a sense of the incredible pressure Diana lived under and how trapped she felt in the royal family.
1. My Week With Marilyn (2011)
Starring Michelle Williams as Marilyn Monroe, My Week With Marilyn tells the story of a young Colin Clark who meets the Hollywood actress when she arrives in London while filming The Prince and the Showgirl. The story is told from the perspective of a young man who is struck by Monroe’s personality and the romance it inspires in people. It’s also the time when her marriage to Arthur Miller began to lose its charm, and focuses on the ebb and flow of her erratic behavior. He captures her moments of intimate happiness and is much easier to watch compared to Blonde, although still heartbreaking.