Three Coins in the Fountain (1954)

Maggie McNarmara, Dorothy McGuire, and Jean Peters star in this Academy Award nominated film about three American secretaries working abroad in Rome, Italy.

Charade (1963)

Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant star in this delightful romantic comedy involving spies and missing money. Set in Paris. Walter Matthau also makes an appearance as a CIA agent.

The Best of Everything (1959)

Original tagline: "These are the girls who want the best of everything...but often settle for a lot less!" Mid-century drama following the lives of three young career women living in New York City.

High Society (1956)

Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly and Frank Sinatra star in this delightful musical comedy remake of the beloved classic The Philadelphia Story (1940).

Far From Heaven (2002)

Set against a spectacular autumn palette, Juilanne Moore, Dennis Quaid, and Dennis Haysbert star in this compelling drama which grapples with issues of race and homosexuality in conservative 1950s Connecticut.

Death In Venice (1971)

An aging German music composer sojourns to Venice in hopes of improving his health and finds himself enraptured by the beauty of a young adolescent boy. A visually mesmerizing film.

Cracks (2009)

Based on the novel of the same name, Eva Green stars as a young, charismatic teacher at an all-girls English boarding school.

Mrs. Henderson Presents (2005)

Based on the true story of the Windmill Theatre in London, Judi Dench stars as a wealthy, eccentric widow who purchases a theatre and turns it into a somewhat Moulin Rouge-esque venue that featured nude performers.

Desk Set (1957)

The introduction of computer technology renders the reference jobs of three women potentially useless. Stars Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy.

Sylvia (2003)

A biopic of writer Sylvia Plath set in the 1950s starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Daniel Craig.

Howard's End (1992)

Emma Thompson, Anthony Hopkins and Helena Bonham Carter star in this E.M. Forster classic set in turn-of-the-century England.

April 5, 2010

Leave Her to Heaven (1945)

You know, there are a lot of films with the world "heaven" in the title and I would always get Leave Her to Heaven (1945) and Heaven Can Wait (1943) mixed up because they both star Gene Tierney, although as very different characters. Gene Tierney takes the honour of being my first "female crush" - I vividly remember seeing her in Laura (1944) when I was six years old and thinking, "oh my god! how is it possible for a woman to be that beautiful?!" As a child, she was my favorite actress simply because I thought she was pretty and it was only when I was older that I realized, she was actually not that great of an actress. Not compared to say, Bette Davis, Marlene Dietrich, Barbara Stanwyck, Myrna Loy, or Ingrid Bergman - all of whom had far better range but whom I didn't discover until much later.

For the most part Gene Tierney was given rather stock characters - generally the beautiful and more distinctively, the good damsel in distress whose reputation hangs on integrity and valor of her male costar. This is why it was so refreshing to see her as the psychotic and even, malicious female protagonist in Leave Her to Heaven, for which she was duly nominated for an Academy Award in 1946.

In Leave Her to Heaven, Tierney plays the young, wealthy Ellen Berent who meets the handsome writer Richard Harland (Cornel Wilde) by chance on the train. The two immediately fall madly in love with one another and marry soon after. They then move to Maine and take up residence in a small cabin by a lake so Richard can concentrate on writing but what began as a fairy tale quickly turns into a nightmare.

pretty girl asleep on the train

boy is immediately spellbound

talk about glamourous white fur! (even though i'm against fur). notice her white gloves too.
boy strikes up a conversation and follows her off the train

inevitably, boy ends up meeting the girl's family who came to pick her up from the station

amazing mandarin styled dress with an asymmetrically gathered skirt and painted details
boy gets invited back to girl's family ranch. have profound conversations under the night sky. gets married.

see, honey, i am the perfect wife! look at this amazing table of food!

interesting hat. like the gold choker.
so happy!

it's not everyday you see someone being able to pull off salmon colored pants
boy and girl move into a small cabin in the woods so boy can write.

boy introduces girl to his crippled nephew

i want this light blue knitted dress. love the belt detail:
girl tries her best to take care of the nephew

it has now become a life goal of mine to acquire a headboard just like this one with the sailing wheel
nephew joins them up at the cabin. the walls are thin...

boy meets girl's very pretty cousin.

cousin likes to garden a lot. cousin also comes to join them up at the cabin.

did i mention, cousin was very pretty?


love the exaggerated vest
girl becomes jealous. so many people diverting her boy's attention.

lovely mandarin styled quilted robe
paranoia sets in.

i see you...

gorgeous lace nightgown with silk chiffon skirt
sometimes i just like to watch you sleep

sleep, my pretty, sleep...


monogram detail

why are you people looking at me that way?!


crazy eyes

Gene Tierney gave a wonderfully complex and layered performance as the paranoid obsessive Ellen, seesawing between coming off as outright malicious to just a pitiful psychotic capable of garnering sympathy from the horrified viewer. I highly recommend this film. It's a tad slow but Tierney's performance was so riveting that I barely even noticed. Without spoiling the ending for you, I'd like to move on by showing you some other screencaps of the interior spaces and other random bits.

Below are some images of the seaside cottage that they moved into after they departed from the mountain in the woods. The interior was decked out in various florals and botanticals (wallpaper, sofa, chairs, etc).



My favorite room was the nursery. I love the handpainted mural and the soothing taupe colored walls.

What adorable toys over the mantel!

Here are a few shots of Jeanne Crain as Ellen's cousin Ruth. I first saw Crain in Cheaper by the Dozen (1950) and later noticed her in A Letter to Three Wives (1949) and The Fan (1949). Unfortunately I haven't seen much of her work after 1950.

cute hat


very nice white dress. love the tie waist and the puff in the sleeves.

A few more of Gene Tierney:

love this whimsical hat and the light blue trim on the jacket

nice light blue satin "house slippers."

Do you look this cool when rowing a boat? Probably not. I think she's actually wearing a terry cloth robe because if I remember correctly, she had on a bathing suit underneath.

Alright, that's all, folks! Sorry it took EONS for me to update this blog. I've been tremendously busy.

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