The Letter (1999)

Director
Manoel de Oliveira

Main cast
Chiara Mastroianni; Pedro Abrunhosa; Antoine Chappey; Leonor Silveira

Genres
Drama

Description
A well-bred, lovely, spiritual, sad young woman marries an attentive physician who loves her. She feels affection but no love. Soon after, without design, she falls in love with Pedro Abrunhosa, a poet and performance artist. He also loves her. She keeps her distance from him, confessing her love to a friend who is a nun and, later, to her husband. Hunger for her love and jealousy consume him; she attends him as he wastes away. With his death, she can marry and express her passion, but what she does and how she explains herself, particularly to her cloistered friend, is at the heart of the film. Glimpses of convent life and of Abrunhosa on stage give contrast and mute comment.


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