Letter From an Unknown Woman

Director: Max Ophüls
Year Released: 1948
Rating: 3.0

Right before a duel (that will most likely end his own life), concert pianist Stefan Brand (Louis Jourdan) receives a letter from Lisa (Joan Fontaine) which goes over her life-long fascination with him, from when she was his next door neighbor (and used to listen to him playing) and how she sired his child (without his knowledge).  Normally with stories of romantic obsession, it's a male figure chasing after an impossible-to-get female, but here that dynamic is refreshingly reversed ... except it's just a little over-the-top in terms of relentless sentimentality, and Jourdan's Stefan is either over-sexed, face-blind or has some type of Artistic Amnesia, since every time he sees Lisa he can't remember anything about her.  The ending is a downer, as Fate finds a way to punish everyone involved in the most tragic way possible.