Lovely young widow Carolyn Muir, her two young children, and the maid discover that the New England seaside house they've moved into is haunted by the former owner -- an old salt named ... See full summary »
At the beginning of the twentieth century, Mrs. Edwin Muir - Lucy - widowed for one year, decides to move out of her controlling in-law's home in London to the English seaside with her adolescent daughter Anna and their long devoted maid Martha. Despite the rental agent trying to dissuade her, Lucy decides to rent Gull Cottage at Whitecliff-by-the-Sea. She learns first hand before she makes the decision the rental agent's hesitance is because the cottage is haunted, supposedly by its now deceased former owner, seaman Captain Daniel Gregg. After she moves in, she does meet the spirit of Captain Gregg face-to-face. Because she refuses to be scared away by his presence, the two come to an understanding, including that he will not make his presence known to Anna. As time progresses, the two develop a friendship and a bond. Despite his statements to her that she needs to live her life including finding another husband, Daniel seems not to approve of any of the men that enter her life, ...Written by
Anna Muir's name is carved into a post on the shore when she is a young girl. Over time, the post and breaker severely deteriorate due to wind, waves, and time. However, the letters carved into the wood post remain fresh and legible as if they had just been carved. See more »
I discovered it because of the music, but love it for the story
I discovered this movie when a friend recommended that I listen to a recording of the score - by the vernerable Bernard Herrmann - and his score is indeed fine! But what keeps me coming back to this film is its heart and soul - and it is odd to be able to say that about a very proper Victorian mannered tale. It is a carefully structured story that would really be well suited for the stage. In particular, I love the comic relief in this film and its colourful supporting characters. Our heroine, Lucy Muir (Gene Tierney), is blithely courageous, though naive and against all advice lets a cottage on a bluff overlooking the ocean. The location is eerily remote and I'm continually struck by how spooky the setting is in the plain, bright light of day. The ghost of Captain Gregg (Rex Harrison) is at first brash and frightening but we come to find that he is a salt of the earth man of high principles.
Get over slick and callow modern film making and take a few steps back in time to watch this most charming and romantic of love stories well told on all sides: an ornate confection of a story, carefully and lovingly photographed, acted with aplomb and riding on top of a musical score that is as moving and powerful as the tides that beat throughout this film.
I find a personal connection to this story in that it takes me back to the days I lived on a northern island that was similarly beautiful though tinged with the bittersweet loneliness of a remote place awash in the deep undercurrents of sorrow and melancholy.
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