Letter From an Unknown Woman (1948)

Image result for letters from an unknown womanA pianist receives a mysterious letter from a woman who played a key role in his past.

I had never heard of this film prior to watching it. The premise sounded interesting, though.

I’m always a fan of a good romance movie, and this one seemed the typical formula. However, Lisa (Joan Fontaine)’s infatuation towards the concert pianist Stefan (Louis Jordan) came across as ever so slightly creepy. Of course we’ve all had our fair share of infatuations but this came across just like one of those modern films where the female protagonist abandons everything to get the male ‘hero’ to notice her.

I’m not going to abandon it on the cesspit that is my Top 10 Worst Films list, but its not a film I’d readily return to. We’ve all fallen for people who never deserved the attention we gave them, and while we’ve don’t end up dead at the end or write them long letters professing love, we’ve all been there. Done that. Got the t-shirt.

This film’s cinematography is elegant and so I’ll give bonus points for that. Fontaine was good enough, although its weird watching a 30 year old actress play an 18 year old. Louis Jordan played the typical male lead which made me cringe at the banality of him, a character accustomed to saying the right words to women in order to win them over.

The closing minutes of the film in which Stefan has a change of heart seemed too little too late and incredibly unbelievable. I don’t know whether or not we’re supposed to fall for it as a sweeping romance, and the score which accompanied the scene made it seem like it was a celebration, and as a result this makes the unseen outcome all the more predictable.

Great film if you like nice cinematography. Other than that, avoid.

MY RATING: **.5 / *****


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