William Wyler's The heiress

Published 2019
Item Details

"Directed with a keen sense of ambiguity by William Wyler, this film based on a hit stage adaptation of Henry James's Washington Square pivots on a question of motive. When shy, emotionally fragile Catherine Sloper (Olivia de Havilland, in a heartbreaking, Oscar-winning turn), the daughter of a wealthy New York doctor, begins to receive calls from the handsome spendthrift Morris Townsend (Montgomery Clift), she becomes possessed by the promise of romance. Are his smoldering professions of love sincere, as she believes they are? Or is Catherine's calculating father (Ralph Richardson) correct in judging Morris a venal fortune seeker? A graceful drawing-room drama boasting Academy Award-winning costume design by Edith Head, The Heiress is also a piercing character study riven by emotional uncertainty and lacerating cruelty, in a triumph of classic Hollywood filmmaking at its most psychologically nuanced"--Container.

Uniform Title:
Heiress (Motion picture).
Two-DVD special edition.
2 videodiscs (104 min.) : DVD video, sound, black and white ; 4 3/4 in. + 1 insert (illustrations ; 48 x 38 cm folded to 19 cm x 12 cm).
4 3/4 in.
full screen
video file
DVD video
region 1
Target Audience Note:
Other Title:
Title from title frame.
Based on the stage play by Ruth and Augustus Goetz; suggested by the Henry James novel Washington Square.
Originally released as a motion picture in 1949.
Full screen (1.37:1).
Features: New, restored 4K digital transfer; New conversation between screenwriter Jay Cocks and film critic Farran Smith Nehme; New program about the film's costumes featuring costume collector and historian Larry McQueen; The Costume Designer, a restored 1950 short film featuring costume designer Edith Head; Appearance by actor Olivia de Havilland on a 1986 episode of The Paul Ryan Show; Excerpts from a 1973 tribute to director William Wyler on The Merv Griffin Show, featuring Wyler, de Havilland, and actors Bette Davis and Walter Pidgeon; Wyler's acceptance speech from The American Film Institute's 1976 Salute to William Wyler; Interview with actor Ralph Richardson filmed in 1981 for the documentary Directed by Willam Wyler; Trailer; An essay by critic Pamela Hutchinson.
Director of photography, Leo Tover ; art director, John Meehan ; editor, William Hornbeck ; production design, Harry Horner ; costumes, Edith Head ; music, Aaron Copland.
Olivia de Havilland, Montgomery Clift, Ralph Richardson, Miriam Hopkins, Vanessa Brown, Mona Freeman, Ray Collins, Betty Linley, Selena Royle.
DVD, NTSC, region 1; full screen (1.37:1 aspect ratio); Dolby Digital monaural.
English dialogue with optional English subtitles for the deaf and hearing-impaired (SDH).
[disc 1]. [Feature film and trailer]
[disc 2]. Special features.
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