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Four Wives

Four Wives(1939)

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Joy reigns in the Lemp household as the family eagerly awaits the return of daughter Ann's fiancé, composer Felix Deitz, from his concert tour and the results of daughter Emma Lemp Talbot's visit to the doctor. The sisters are bitterly disappointed, however, when they learn that Emma is not pregnant and never will be, while Ann is carrying the baby of her late husband, Mickey Borden. The knowledge that she is carrying Mickey's child awakens Ann's memories of their brief married life, and she becomes obsessed with thoughts of Mickey's bitter failure in life. Especially haunting is the vision of Mickey playing his own composition, the one with no beginning or end, only a middle. Ann's feelings of guilt drive a wedge into her relationship with Felix, prompting her sister Kay to ask the doctor, Clinton Forrest, Jr. for help. Clinton advises Ann to get on with her life, and she decides to elope with Felix rather than enjoy the big wedding that she and Mickey were denied. At their wedding dinner, Felix begins to work on Mickey's unfinished composition, and sister Thea Lemp Crowley announces that she is planning to adopt a baby. On the day that Thea brings the new baby home, however, she learns that she is pregnant and turns the infant over to Emma and her husband Ernest. Meanwhile, Ann insists that Felix go on his concert tour, and after a heated quarrel, Felix leaves the house. Ann runs after him to apologize, but she is too late, and as Felix's train pulls out of the station, she collapses in premature labor. Felix returns to save the baby's life with a blood transfusion, but then goes back to New York. As Ann recovers in her hospital bed, she hears the broadcast of Felix's first concert coming from New York. It is Mickey's composition, with a beginning and end by Felix. The piece receives a tremendous ovation, bringing to Mickey the acclaim that had eluded him in life. Mickey's success alleviates Ann's guilt, and all ends happily as Ann and Felix reconcile, Thea gives birth to twin girls and Kay marries Clint.