The Letter Reviews

  • Feb 05, 2019

    The wife of a rubber plantation administrator shoots a man to death and claims it was self-defense, but a letter in her own hand may prove her undoing. Prime Bette Davis featuring a memorable shooting in the opening. The Letter (1940) is a classic melodramatic film noir of murder and deceit, directed by William Wyler. The screenplay by Howard Koch . First-class cinema.

    The wife of a rubber plantation administrator shoots a man to death and claims it was self-defense, but a letter in her own hand may prove her undoing. Prime Bette Davis featuring a memorable shooting in the opening. The Letter (1940) is a classic melodramatic film noir of murder and deceit, directed by William Wyler. The screenplay by Howard Koch . First-class cinema.

  • Feb 01, 2019

    The best movie character ever portrayed: Bette Davis as Leslie Crosbie!

    The best movie character ever portrayed: Bette Davis as Leslie Crosbie!

  • Jan 19, 2018

    Sweaty melodrama from a Somerset Maugham story full of sex, that you never see on the screen. Films like it were once mainstream now they just don't get made.

    Sweaty melodrama from a Somerset Maugham story full of sex, that you never see on the screen. Films like it were once mainstream now they just don't get made.

  • May 19, 2016

    The Letter is such a good, if not great noir flick. The story is so authentic and intriguing, albeit too confusing and unexplained at times. The characters are phenomenal, albeit the protagonist is problematic. The cinematography is just gorgeous, the score is absolutely fantastic, the acting is really strong and its pacing is great as well. It is in the end a flawed, but respectable film that benefits from such a strong mysterious quality to it.

    The Letter is such a good, if not great noir flick. The story is so authentic and intriguing, albeit too confusing and unexplained at times. The characters are phenomenal, albeit the protagonist is problematic. The cinematography is just gorgeous, the score is absolutely fantastic, the acting is really strong and its pacing is great as well. It is in the end a flawed, but respectable film that benefits from such a strong mysterious quality to it.

  • Apr 16, 2016

    I'm trying to watch all things Bette Davis, so this was another film to check off the list. Davis, usually so brilliantly over-the-top, is very subtle here and plays a character who murders someone with a deep lack of conscience and remorse without effort. One of her great performances and the film itself is good, too.

    I'm trying to watch all things Bette Davis, so this was another film to check off the list. Davis, usually so brilliantly over-the-top, is very subtle here and plays a character who murders someone with a deep lack of conscience and remorse without effort. One of her great performances and the film itself is good, too.

  • Mar 09, 2016

    He tried to make love to me so I shot him. The rich wife of a plantation owner kills a man one night that she claims tried to rape her. The police arrive and find a letter in her hand that may alter everyone's opinion of her story. Can she talk her way out of the allegations that ensue? "Tell your friend to go to the devil." William Wyler, director of Roman Holiday, Ben-Hur, Funny Girl, The Best Years of Our Lives, The Big Country, The Heiress, and Carrie (1952), delivers The Letter. The storyline for this picture is an interesting crime thriller with well written and executed characters. The acting is solid and the cast includes Bette Davis, Herbert Marshall, Cecil Kellaway, Gale Sondergaard, and James Stephenson. "Even my agony was a kind of joy." I came across this picture on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) and had to DVR this Bette Davis classic. This movie has some good twists and turns that are well executed by Davis. This movie isn't perfect, but it is well done and worth a viewing. This is a classic movie that is worth your time. "If a man could love you more I wouldn't know how." Grade: B

    He tried to make love to me so I shot him. The rich wife of a plantation owner kills a man one night that she claims tried to rape her. The police arrive and find a letter in her hand that may alter everyone's opinion of her story. Can she talk her way out of the allegations that ensue? "Tell your friend to go to the devil." William Wyler, director of Roman Holiday, Ben-Hur, Funny Girl, The Best Years of Our Lives, The Big Country, The Heiress, and Carrie (1952), delivers The Letter. The storyline for this picture is an interesting crime thriller with well written and executed characters. The acting is solid and the cast includes Bette Davis, Herbert Marshall, Cecil Kellaway, Gale Sondergaard, and James Stephenson. "Even my agony was a kind of joy." I came across this picture on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) and had to DVR this Bette Davis classic. This movie has some good twists and turns that are well executed by Davis. This movie isn't perfect, but it is well done and worth a viewing. This is a classic movie that is worth your time. "If a man could love you more I wouldn't know how." Grade: B

  • Sep 30, 2015

    Arguably one of Davis' best in this complicated murder drama.

    Arguably one of Davis' best in this complicated murder drama.

  • May 30, 2015

    Both Wyler and his star, Bette Davis, were well ahead of their time. This film is a strong reminder of that. While the film adheres to the general melodramatic approach of most movies of its day -- there is particularly complex performance from Davis. And, Wyler's film fully utilizes the rare skill of his cinematographer, Tony Gaudio, to create a surprisingly unsettling movie.

    Both Wyler and his star, Bette Davis, were well ahead of their time. This film is a strong reminder of that. While the film adheres to the general melodramatic approach of most movies of its day -- there is particularly complex performance from Davis. And, Wyler's film fully utilizes the rare skill of his cinematographer, Tony Gaudio, to create a surprisingly unsettling movie.

  • Mar 11, 2015

    Wonderful film with great Bette Davis who got a deserved nomination for her performance, so as Wyler for vivid direction in this nuanced film noir.

    Wonderful film with great Bette Davis who got a deserved nomination for her performance, so as Wyler for vivid direction in this nuanced film noir.

  • Jan 30, 2015

    Bette Davis, ono sto je u ovom filmu besmrtno.

    Bette Davis, ono sto je u ovom filmu besmrtno.