TO EACH HIS OWN (1946) B/W 122m dir: Mitchell Leisen

w/Olivia de Havilland, John Lund, Mary Anderson, Roland Culver, Phillip Terry, Bill Goodwin, Virginia Welles, Victoria Horne, Griff Barnett, Alma Macrorie

Superb melodrama about the mother of an illegitimate son who meets him during WWII when he is a soldier (and his father's spitting image).

From The Movie Guide: "What might have been a trite soap opera is elevated to the status of superior emotional drama by a wise script, sensitive direction, and an Oscar-winning performance by de Havilland, her first and the first for an actress at Paramount. ...

"Lund, who had already established himself on Broadway, made his film debut here. An interesting sidelight is that de Havilland hadn't worked for two years. She'd been on suspension from Warner Bros. and was trying to break a contract which they claimed included all of her suspension time. She sued the studio successfully and the result was a law that limited studios to a seven-year agreement with an actor, with no clause regarding suspensions. That became known as the 'de Havilland Decision,' and actors have thanked her ever since. Leisen and de Havilland had worked together in HOLD BACK THE DAWN, and when she asked him to direct, he passed on it at first, then was convinced when the studio gave him script approval as well as several other concessions. It was sentimental but never bathetic. Leisen knew that de Havilland had given a star performance and on the wrap day gifted her with a bracelet that featured a mini-Oscar. His prophecy was on the money, and she took the Oscar home at the next awards ceremony. [Charles] Brackett's story was nominated for a statuette, but that was it from the academy. Audiences loved it, and credit must be given to the studio for attempting a 'soft' picture at the time. No one expected it to do as well as it did. Good editing by [Alma] Macrorie [who also acts in the film as the character Belle Ingham] and Victor Young's music kept the mood swings right on target. Miss de Havilland's winning of the Oscar was a surspise to many who had placed their bets on the formidable quartet of losers in 1946. They were Celia Johnson for BRIEF ENCOUNTER, Jane Wyman in THE YEARLING, Jennifer Jones in DUEL IN THE SUN, and Rosalind Russell as SISTER KENNY."