Search Museum of the Moving Image


Portrait of Jennie


Dir. William Dieterle. 1948, 86 mins. 35mm. With Jennifer Jones, Joseph Cotten, Ethel Barrymore, Lillian Gish. A hidden Hollywood treasure, the supernatural romantic melodrama Portrait of Jennie has gained an intense cult following over the years. A masterpiece of mood and atmosphere, the film begins in Depression-era New York, where a struggling painter (Cotten) befriends an eccentric, otherworldly child (Jones)—who seems to age at a startling rate. As she becomes his muse, he sets out to unlock Jennie’s mystery, leading to an extravagant denouement that earned the film an Academy Award for best special effects.

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