Blonde’s Director Explains The Deeper Meaning Behind Ana De Armas’ NC-17 Marilyn Monroe Flick

Ana de Armas in Knock Knock.
(Image credit: Lionsgate Premiere)

Biopics are all the rage right now, as the Pam & Tommy Hulu series recently dropped to the streaming platform, and films like King Richard, Spencer, and House of Gucci dominated the box office and populated the 2022 Oscar nominations. This theme is continuing in 2022, as Ana de Armas is portraying the iconic Marilyn Monroe in the film Blonde. Now, director Andrew Dominik explains that the upcoming NC-17-rated drama is much more than just another film about a notable figure’s life.

Blonde is far from the first biopic to focus on Marilyn Monroe, so movie lovers are probably wondering how it differs from what's come before. In an interview with Collider, Andrew Dominik talked about wanting to tell a story of childhood drama as it relates to both a person's private and public self. Here's what Dominik says, exactly:

Well, the whole idea of Blonde was to detail a childhood drama and then show the way in which that drama splits the adults into a public and private self. And how the adult sees the world through the lens of that childhood drama, and it’s sort of a story of a person whose rational picture of the world as being overwhelmed by her unconscious, and it uses the iconography of Marilyn Monroe.

Pretty much everyone alive knows who the Hollywood starlet was, which is something that can only be said about a select group of celebrities. Given the amount of media exposure she had, her image is deeply embedded in the fabric of American pop culture. In the same interview, Andrew Dominik explains that his film will use those familiar images while adding a humanizing aspect of “her internal drama”:

It uses all the imagery that you have seen of Marilyn Monroe, the films, photographs of her life. But it changes the meaning of all those things in accordance with her internal drama. So it’s sort of a movie about the unconscious in a way. And it’s a tragedy. It’s sort of like an unwanted child who becomes the most wanted woman in the world and has to deal with all of the desire that is directed at her, and how confusing that is. It’s kind of a nightmare. It’s about being in a car with no brakes. It’s just going faster and faster and faster.

As glamorized as Marilyn Monroe and classic Hollywood has been, we'll apparently get to see some of the tragic underbelly of the actress' life. With the director describing the film as a “nightmare”, I can imagine that Blonde will have us empathizing with Monroe's story more than ever. 

It’s clear that will not be a "mild" film, and its NC-17 rating pretty confirms that notion. Previously, Andrew Dominik expressed blunt thoughts on having a stricter rating for the movie which will actually be the first Netflix original to be branded NC-17. Based on his further comments, it seems Dominik relished the creative freedom, saying:

Netflix are letting me release the movie I wanted to make, and even with the NC-17 rating, I think that’s pretty good.

Although Blonde doesn’t have a confirmed release date yet, we do know a good amount about the film, and it looks like fans of beloved Bombshell Marilyn Monroe will be able to see the biopic sometime this year. Of course, they'll need to have a Netflix subscription to check it out. It sounds like the movie could challenge what we know about the late star, and I'm hoping that it is able to bring some fresh elements to the biopic genre in the process.

Carlie Hoke
Content Writer

Constantly thinking about books, coffee, and the existential dread I feel from Bo Burnham’s Inside.  While writing I’m also raising a chaotic toddler, who may or may not have picked up personality traits from watching one too many episodes of Trailer Park Boys.