Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) - Rotten Tomatoes

Gentlemen Prefer Blondes1953

Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953)



Critic Consensus: Anchored by Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell's sparkling magnetism, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes is a delightfully entertaining 1950s musical.

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Movie Info

Second-billed Marilyn Monroe is the blonde in question in this second film version of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: Miss Lorelei Lee, whose philosophy is "diamonds are a girl's best friend." Together with her best human friend Dorothy (top-billed Jane Russell), showgirl Lorelei embarks upon a boat trip to Paris, where she intends to marry millionaire Gus Esmond (Tommy Noonan). En route, the girls are bedeviled by private detective Malone (Elliot Reid), hired by Esmond's father (Taylor Holmes) to make certain that Lorelei isn't just another gold-digger. When Dorothy falls in love with the poverty-stricken Malone, Lorelei decides to find her pal a wealthier potential husband, and that's how she gets mixed up with flirtatious diamond merchant Sir Francis Beekman (Charles Coburn) and precocious youngster Henry Spofford III (George "Foghorn" Winslow). Most of the Leo Robin-Jule Styne songs from the Broadway show remain intact, including Marilyn Monroe's rendition of "Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend," a production number later imitated by pop icon Madonna. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

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Jane Russell
as Dorothy
Charles Coburn
as Sir Frances Beekman
Tommy Noonan
as Gus Esmond
George Winslow
as Henry Spifford III
Taylor Holmes
as Gus Esmond Sr.
Norma Varden
as Lady Beekman
Marcel Dalio
as Magistrate
Steven Geray
as Hotel Manager
Leo Mostovoy
as Phillipe
Alex Frazer
as Pritchard
George Davis
as Cab Driver
Alphonse Martell
as Headwaiter
James Moultrie
as Boy Dancer
Fred Moultrie
as Boy Dancer
Freddie Moultrie
as Boy Dancer
Jean De Briac
as Gendarme
George Dee
as Gendarme
Peter Camlin
as Gendarme
Jean Del Val
as Ship's Capt
Alvy Moore
as Anderson
Jimmy Young
as Stevens
Jack Chefe
as Proprietor
Max Willenz
as Court Clerk
Robert Foulk
as Passport Official
Ralph Peters
as Passport Official
Harry Seymour
as Captain of Waiters
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Critic Reviews for Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

All Critics (45) | Top Critics (15)

I cycled home somewhat overwhelmed by the music and colour and sexiness of the film I'd just unexpectedly seen. I've seen it many times since and, with all its flaws, I love every minute of it.

April 3, 2020 | Full Review…

Howard Hawks adds sly sexual insinuation to the blatantly sexual antics of Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell in this scintillating 1953 adaptation of the stage musical based on Anita Loos's novel.

January 25, 2016 | Full Review…

For all the three-dimensional attractions of its two leading ladies, this is a rather flat cinemusical.

January 26, 2011 | Full Review…
Top Critic

You won't find a more elegant take on '50s va-va-voom vulgarity or a more joyous paean to the cheesecake self-empowerment of two little girls from Little Rock.

August 4, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
Top Critic

There's more warmth in [Russell's] fondly bemused looks at Monroe, whose friendship is a front-row ticket to the best show in town.

August 3, 2010 | Full Review…

If there's a single film that could shatter Laura Mulvey's theory of the "male gaze" it's Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

August 1, 2010 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Gentlemen Prefer Blondes


A very funny and entertaining musical in gorgeous Technicolor, with excellent dialogue, an animal magnetism exuded by Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe, and nice musical numbers like "Bye, Bye Baby" and Monroe's glamorous rendition of "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend."

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

An enjoyable mix of best friends who want very opposite things from potential husbands. For me, Jane Russell stole the spotlight in this film, whilst Marilyn was much more over the top. As a Musical it's very forgettable, but otherwise it made for easy watching.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer


A pretty good movie, it's almost exactly like How to Marry a Millionaire, but it's slightly better, mostly because it's funnier.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

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