Marilyn: Say Goodbye to the President (1985)

Run Time - 71 min.  |  
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Produced for the BBC, this documentary sets out to establish the connection between Marilyn Monroe and John F. Kennedy and Robert Kennedy, and to explore the mystery surrounding her death in August 1962. The filmmakers interview a wide variety of people associated with the principals, including Kennedy friends and associates; an ex-wife of actor Peter Lawford (he introduced Monroe to J.F.K.); private detectives who were involved in wiretapping Lawford's Santa Monica home where the President and Monroe allegedly spent time together; associates of James P. Hoffa, the labor leader who publicly denounced Robert Kennedy and was privy to the surveillance tapes; a former lover of Monroe's; her housekeeper; and several of her neighbors. Also included is vintage footage of the principals, including Monroe's famous performance of "Happy Birthday to You" at the President's birthday party in May 1962. Although the film cannot definitively establish what happened on the night of her death, it does suggest that Robert Kennedy saw her that afternoon, that she placed a call to Lawford that evening (giving him the message in the title of this film), that she was unconscious but alive when first discovered in her bed, and that Lawford arranged for Kennedy to leave Los Angeles before news of her death was made public. It also concludes that Hoffa and some of his Mob connections were ready to make public the affair between Robert Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe when the senator was assassinated in June 1968.