A Letter to Three Wives
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Just as their boat sets off for the day, Deborah (Crain), Rita (Southern) and Lora Mae (Darnell) receive a letter from the alluring Addie Ross (narrator Celeste Holm) stating she has left town with one of their husbands. Each wife spends the fretful day pondering the state of her marriage and the affection each of their husbands has for Addie. By the end of the day, each woman is convinced she must surely be the betrayed wife.
- Commentary by Mankiewicz biographers Kenneth Geist & Cheryl Lower
- Biography: Linda Darnell - Hollywood's Fallen Angel
- Fox Movietone News
- Oscars presented for Achievements in Motion Pictures
- Restoration Comparison
- Theatrical Trailer
Top Customer Reviews
There's Deborah Bishop (Jeanne Crain) married to Brad (Jeffrey Lynn). She was a small town girl swept away by a glamorous officer, who now lives a life of country club complacency. She has never lost her insecurity. There's Rita Phipps (Ann Southern) married to George (Kirk Douglas). She and her husband started out as school teachers. He still is but she is carving a successful and well-paid career as a radio soap opera writer. There's Lora Mae Hollingsway (Linda Darnell) married to Porter (Paul Douglas). She wanted away from the other side of the tracks, and managed to make a marriage happen with the town's biggest businessman.
As they flash back, we learn a lot about each one of them and the state of their marriages.Read more ›
Three society wives (Crain, Sothern, and Darnell) are committed to hosting a children's picnic on an isolated island--and as the ferry prepares to depart they receive a letter from town femme fatale Addie Ross (never seen but memorably voiced by Celeste Holm.) Addie informs them that she is leaving town forever... but has decided to take one of their husbands along as a memento. And each of the three wives, cut off from the outside world for the day, is left to wonder: when I go home tonight, will my husband still be there?
During the day each of the wives recalls scenes from her marriage. Deborah (Craine) arrived in town as a pretty but very awkward farm girl fresh out of the navy and with a wardrobe consisting of a single and very ugly mail-order dress; she has never felt entirely secure. Rita (Sothern) is married to a schoolteacher, and has committed the unpardonable sin of becoming the writer of a popular radio show that brings her more money than her husband will ever earn. And Lora Mae (Darnell) was a beauty born on the wrong side of the tracks who connived her way into a wealthy marriage and now specializes in bickering with her gruff and boorish husband.Read more ›
Joe was a great writer and a consummate wit; were he not in the movies one might think him an intellectual. (Hats off to his "Cleopatra"). He understood women and wrote some of the most complex, deep and exciting women on the screen. He gave them life on the page and then with his brilliant eye for casting and directing he brought them to life on the screen. Eve Harrington, Margo Channing, in "All About Eve". Maria Vargas in "The Barefoot Contessa", and his most complex of all his smart Cleopatra, a modern woman of politics and passion in an ancient setting.
The unseen Addie Ross, the clumsy Deborah, Rita the writer, and the smart and guarded Lora Mae are just a few of the gems Joe Mankiewicz presented to us in his Oscar winning "Letter". He brings out some of the best acting Jeanne Crain would ever do. She is both vulnerable and comic. Ann Sothern dominates the screen as a feminist ahead of her time. She cements the image that she would carry the rest of her career, that of a beautiful smart woman making it in a man's world. The stunning centerpiece to this work is the top-notch performance handed in by Linda Darnell as tough wrong side of the tracks Lora Mae. This is a great performance by an actress who herself felt she had little to offer as an actress. Here with the help of her writer and director Miss Darnell delivers the goods as no one else of her generation possibly could.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent movie with suspense I hadn't expected. Seller described it and it arrived on time.Published 1 day ago by Babs
Such a great classic film. Which one's husband runs off with their friend. These three have flash backs about their relationships with their husbands. I guessed right.Published 1 month ago by Elizabeth
Got to love old classic movies. The movie keeps you in suspense until the end. I don't want to give anything away but definitely worth watching!Published 1 month ago by moog718