Popular and beautiful Fanny Trellis is forced into a loveless marriage with an older man, Jewish banker Job Skeffington, in order to save her beloved brother Trippy from an embezzlement charge, and predictable complications result.
A piano teacher believes that her fiancé was killed on the battlefield. When he miraculously returns, they decide to marry, but are threatened by a wealthy, egotistical composer the piano teacher started dating on the rebound after she became convinced her love had died.
The wife of a rubber plantation administrator shoots a man to death and claims it was self-defense. Her poise, graciousness and stoicism impress nearly everyone who meets her. Her husband is certainly without doubt; so is the district officer; while her lawyer's doubts may be a natural skepticism. But this is Singapore and the resentful natives will have no compunction about undermining this accused murderess. A letter in her hand turns up and may prove her undoing.Written by
After shooting was completed, William Wyler watched a rough cut and decided that he wanted the character of Leslie to be more sympathetic. He ordered some re-writes and planned to shoot them. Bette Davis recalled - "I was heartbroken," she said, "as I felt, after reading the rewrites, that my performance could be ruined with these additions. I asked Willie if I could see the film before doing the retakes. To my horror I was crying at myself at the end of the showing. There was dead silence in the projection room when the lights came up. I said, 'If we film these retakes, we will lose the intelligent audience. It is impossible to please everyone with any one film. If we try to accomplish this, we can lose all audiences.' Plus, to my shame, even though I played the part, I deeply sympathized with Leslie Crosbie. We only made one small addition to the original film. Wyler had agreed with me. Thank God!" See more »
When Leslie enters her bedroom for the last time, she locks the door behind her. Later, the door is unlocked when Robert enters. See more »
In Singapore, Leslie Crosbie (Bette Davis), the wife of the administrator of a plantation field of a rubber company, shoots six times in Geoffrey Hammond.and pleads self-defense to her husband Robert Crosbie (Herbert Marshall) and her lawyer and friend of the family Howard Joyce (James Stephenson). The case seems to be easy and simple, but a letter written by Leslie to Geoffrey and in the hand of the Hammond's widow may sentence Leslie to death by hanging. When the widow decides to sell the letter for US$ 10,000.00, Howard faces a dilemma between his friendship and his career.
"The Letter" is a great film-noir, nominated for seven Oscars, and with awesome performance of Bette Davis in the role of an evil and cold-blooded woman. The story and the characters are very well developed in an increasing tension. The direction of William Wyler is precise as usual, and uses long and low paced shootings along the scenario, giving a perfect view to the viewers. The use of shadows in the black& white cinematography is also amazing. I am not sure about the meaning of the full moon, but maybe it discloses the real feelings of Leslie, covered by the "clouds" most of the time while living with Robert. Anyway, the full moon has an important symbolic meaning in the film. James Stephenson, in the role of a honest lawyer living a dilemma between saving the life of his client and friend, or staining his career, and Herbert Marshall, performing a naive cuckold in love with his unfaithful wife, have also magnificent performances. My vote is nine.
Title (Brazil): "A Carta" ("The Letter")
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