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Film Noir: Johnny Belinda (1948)

Directed by: Jean Negolesco

Based on a play by: Elmer Harris

Screenplay by: Irma von Cube and Allen Vincent

Actors: Jane Wyman, Lew Ayres, Charles Bickford, Agnes Moorehead

 Film Noir Johnny Belinda

Belinda McDonald (Wyman) is a young, deaf-mute woman living on Cape Breton Island. Living on a farm with her father (Bickford) and her Aunt (Moorehead), Belinda is capable of farm chores, but unable to communicate well. When a new doctor (Ayres) moves into the community, he befriends the family and slowly teaches Belinda sign language.

When Belinda in raped, and bears a child, all fingers wrongly accuse the doctor.

Johnny Belinda has a classic film noir twist in which Belinda becomes the femme fatale. Not because she is a sexy siren , of course, but because the good doctor will do anything to help her, even risking his own reputation and livelihood.

Filmed in : California

Awards: This film noir earned Jane Wyman an Oscar in 1949 for Best Actress in a Leading Role.

Trivia: The playwright, Elmer Harris, owned a home on Prince Edward Island, in Canada, which is today Bay of Fortune Inn. The play was based on a heinous crime that happened on the island.

 

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