114 user 42 critic

Portrait of Jennie (1948)

Approved | | Drama, Romance, Fantasy | 22 April 1949 (USA)
A mysterious girl inspires a struggling artist.



(novel), (adaptation) | 2 more credits »

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Miss Spinney
Mother Mary of Mercy
Gus O'Toole
Albert Sharpe ...
Mrs. Jekes (landlady)
Capt. Cobb
Maude Simmons ...
Clara Morgan


Eben Adams is a talented but struggling artist in Depression era New York who has never been able to find inspiration for a painting. One day, after he finally finds someone to buy a painting from him, a pretty but odd young girl named Jennie Appleton appears and strikes up an unusual friendship with Eben. Written by Albert Sanchez Moreno (a.moreno@mindspring.com) with correction by John Knoderer (GodLovesEveryone.org@mazes.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

22 April 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tidal Wave  »

Box Office


$4,041,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(1956) (5.0) (L-R)


(green tint and sepia tone for final reel, excluding last shot)| (Technicolor) (final shot)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on Halloween night, October 31, 1949, with Joseph Cotten reprising his film role and Anne Baxter as Jennie. See more »


While talking to Eke, Eben is standing on the left of the screen. After a close-up shot of Eke, Eben is on the right. See more »


Jennie Appleton: [singing] Where I come from nobody knows and where I am going everything goes. The wind blows, the sea flows, nobody knows. And where I am going, nobody knows.
See more »

Crazy Credits

No credits at all are shown at the beginning except for the studio logo, not even the title of the film. Instead, we hear a narrator speaking the prologue, and then announcing, "And now, 'Portrait of Jennie'". The credits are saved for the end of the picture. See more »


Referenced in Biography: Jennifer Jones: Portrait of a Lady (2001) See more »


Jennie's Song
Music by Bernard Herrmann
Lyrics by Robert Nathan
Sung by Jennifer Jones
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

May I Echo All The Praise For This Film?
24 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Prior to my review, 50 people have done theirs on this website and there isn't much I can add to the adjectives they have used, such as "beautiful,"" "haunting," "underrated," etc.

"Portrait Of Jennie" continues to be my all-time favorite romance story, probably because it features time travel, which I usually find fascinating, and two of my most-liked classic actors: Jennifer Jones and Joseph Cotten.

Once you get past that beginning narration consisting of stupid New Age mumbo-jumbo, the film is pure charm and who better to exhibit that than Jones? Few women ever looked more wholesome, sounded sweeter and looked more beautiful than this actress, who really projected innocence as she showed in her Academy Award winning debut in "The Song Of Bernadette" earlier in the decade.

Cotten is a good match for her in this film. An underrated star, he had a great voice and magnetism of his own.

However, the more I watch this film the more I am fascinated with Ethel Barrymore, who plays the kindly, spinster art museum owner. She has an extremely knowledgeable countenance and delivery of speech. Cecil Kellaway plays her art museum partner and rounds out this very likable cast.. The are no "bad guys" in this film......just good people.

The mystical time-space quality in this romance, something akin to 1980''s "Somewhere In Time," fascinates throughout and special effects are pretty darn good, too, considering when it was made.

For me, as with others, this movie was a haunting one: a film that moves me each time I see it. I have viewed perhaps 10,000 films in my 60 years and this one still ranks in the Top Ten.

Thanks to it being available on DVD - and at a cheap price - more and more people are discovering this gem. This is one of those classic movies that would still appeal to younger people today.....at least, I hope I would.

72 of 80 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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eeeeewwwww! stevezodiacxl5
A question for Americans. walkinginrain
Miss Spinney = Jennie? AndiB1986
I really enjoyed this movie, any suggestion ? antiquegirl12
Nancy Davis in this film? willieboyd2
I can't stop watching this movie... fsilva
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