7.7/10
5,416
118 user 48 critic

Portrait of Jennie (1948)

A mysterious girl inspires a struggling artist.

Director:

William Dieterle

Writers:

Robert Nathan (from the book by), Paul Osborn (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jennifer Jones ... Jennie Appleton
Joseph Cotten ... Eben Adams
Ethel Barrymore ... Miss Spinney
Lillian Gish ... Mother Mary of Mercy
Cecil Kellaway ... Matthews
David Wayne ... Gus O'Toole
Albert Sharpe Albert Sharpe ... Moore
Henry Hull ... Eke
Florence Bates ... Mrs. Jekes (landlady)
Felix Bressart ... Pete
Clem Bevans ... Capt. Cobb
Maude Simmons Maude Simmons ... Clara Morgan
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

ARE YOU IN LOVE THIS WEEK? If you are - you'll get a double thrill from this most romantic of all love stories about a man who was in love with a girl who lived twenty years before his time. If you aren't - it may change your ideas on the subject for the rest of your life.


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 April 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tidal Wave See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,041,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

3 Channel Stereo (1956) (5.0) (L-R)| Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

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

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A 17 year old Anne Francis (uncredited and overdubbed) appears in the final scene as one of the three teenage girls admiring the portrait. See more »

Goofs

During the scene where Eben first meets Jennie in the park, the snow on the front of her coat comes and goes. See more »

Quotes

Jennie Appleton: Eben... I want always just to sit and watch you paint.
Eben Adams: Now that I've found the perfect model, I'll paint her again and again.
Jennie Appleton: No, I - - I didn't mean that... I mean I want you to paint all the beautiful things in the world.
Eben Adams: [smiles, holds her tight] You're the most beautiful thing in the world.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with a book entitled THE PAINTINGS OF EBEN ADAMS with the inside page headed PORTRAIT OF JENNIE

Dated 1934

H · 30: W · 25 INCHES See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood: The Selznick Years (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Nuages
(uncredited)
Music by Claude Debussy
Adapted by Dimitri Tiomkin
Heard over opening narration
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of the greatest stories of true love ever filmed
1 January 2005 | by fertilecelluloidSee all my reviews

A bittersweet sense of melancholy permeates this stunning romantic fantasy, a film produced by David Selznick as a cinematic altar to his wife Jennifer Jones.

I adored Jones in Henry King's THE SONG OF BERNADETTE, but I love Jones (almost as much as Joseph Cotten did) in PORTRAIT OF JENNIE.

Cotten is Eben Adams, an artist who meets the enigmatic Jennie (Jones) in Central Park. Their time together is always limited for Jennie is compelled to return home to a place Cotten will never visit.

At first just a sweet schoolgirl, Jennie appears to have aged unnaturally every time she re-appears to Cotten -- eventually, she is old enough to acknowledge Cotten's romantic and carnal intentions towards her.

This unusual, unique studio pic epitomizes "dreamy" for it is exceptionally surreal and photographed in a strange, re-texturized black and white (von Trier's amazing BREAKING THE WAVES used a similar technique to introduce new scenes).

The climax, staged on a storm-swept island, is absolutely beautiful and immensely tragic.

Some have dismissed PORTRAIT OF JENNIE as amounting to nothing more than a series of pretty pictures. I passionately disagree. It is one of the greatest stories of true love ever filmed, and there is nothing false in its intensity or tone (not if you have loved like this).


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