Think today of how important celebrity is. Think about how the happenings of Lindsay Lohan or Bradley Cooper being the year’s “Sexiest Man Alive” lead off news casts. Today we know more about Charlie Sheen’s mental capacity then we do about CIA spies being rounded up in Iran. Well, today its quite easy. Facebook, Twitter and TMZ make news of what a celebrity ate for dinner at the tip of our fingers.

In 1956 the access wasn’t as easy to obtain but the “celebrity” was still prevalent and debatably the first, but no doubt the most iconic, was Marilyn Monroe. Monroe had an aura about her that enraptured audiences. People wanted to see her, be with her or even be her. Obviously there have been numerous accounts in books, film and television that have touched on the subject of Monroe. None in my opinion have given such a focused view of the multilayered actress and broken down the “image” of what Monroe has become today like My Week with Marilyn.

Based off the diaries of Colin Clark, My Week with Marilyn takes place during one month of shooting the film The Prince and the Showgirl starring Monroe and Sir Laurence Olivier, who also directed. Clark, played by Eddie Redmayne, gets his first production job as a third assistant director. He is the most expendable but also has the most access. This access allows him intimate moments with the celebrities of the film. His time on the production seems to give him a greater understanding of Monroe and Olivier as people and where they are in their lives. This understanding is what draws Monroe to him. Monroe is in need of a friend and Colin ends up being that friend on a very intimate but platonic level.

Michelle Williams gives a remarkable Oscar worthy performance as Monroe. The details to the simple nuances of Monroe are amazing. Not only that, but Williams is essentially playing multiple characters. She is playing Marilyn, Norma Jean, the tortured girl on pills and other medications, and the struggling actress trying to bring validity to her performances.

Being that this film is not a biopic and focuses on Monroe during this one month of shooting, allows Williams to bring something more to Monroe that we haven’t seen before. We see a side that makes us hurt for what she struggles with and angers us for what she did to contribute to her untimely death.

Williams’ performance was not the only remarkable one in the film. Kenneth Branagh as Olivier also gives a stunning performance. We are able to see what struggles Olivier went through to stay relevant and try to adapt to the changing times. I haven’t seen Branagh this good in a while. Not to be lost in the shuffle is Redmayne’s portrayal of Colin Clark. He does a marvelous job, along with director Simon Curtis, of making you feel what Colin feels when he is around and with Marilyn. There is a simple honesty and naïvety of Colin that is what ultimately draws Monroe to him. The greatness of these performances will allow all audiences to enjoy this story.

Whether you are a fan of Monroe or Olivier or read Clark’s diaries or not you will enjoy this film. People are still fascinated with nostalgic Hollywood and seeing behind the curtain during a time when we didn’t have that ability. This is the best ensemble of acting I have seen this year and that wasn’t the only greatness of the film. Keep an eye on the costumes. The Academy loves historical accuracy in clothing and this film was spot on. This was one of the best films I have seen this year and look for this film to gain some serious momentum and plenty of Oscar talk.