Now, Voyager

Another film-carrying performance, another Academy Award nomination for Bette Davis—her fifth in five consecutive years—for Now, Voyager, one of the most openly melodramatic films in a career filled with them. Charlotte (Davis), a spinster living under the iron fist of an oppressive mother, is sent to a sanitarium following a mother-induced nervous breakdown. Once there, she blossoms under the supervision of Dr. Jaquith (Claude Rains). Sent on a long cruise at the insistence of a loyal friend, Charlotte meets the unhappily married Jeremiah (Paul Henreid), with whom she falls quickly, irrevocably in love. But that love, seemingly doomed from the start, eventually leads Charlotte into a mentor/mother role for Jeremiah’s wayward daughter Tina, a relationship which gives Charlotte a new sense of purpose and devotion. A hugely popular success upon release, and inducted into the National Film Registry in 2007, Now, Voyager is a film that “demonstrates just how clever and accomplished Hollywood’s art of popular storytelling is.”—Dana Polan, Senses of Cinema.

Appears in: Bette & Joan

Genres: Melodrama