This is a wonderful film about the relationship between art and life. Joseph Cotten plays an unsuccessful painter, whose commercial landscapes just don't sell. While visiting galleries, one of the owners encourages him to paint portraits. On the way home, he runs into "Jennie" in Central Park. She's his muse, his inspiration, and his love. His imaginary friend encourages him to take greater and greater chances, eventually resulting in a masterpiece that hangs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Cotten character passes through three stages of artistic development--commercial, political, and personal. Each phase is more difficult, but as he progresses he confronts and overcomes his fears. His talent makes the imaginary real.
Ethel Barrymore is the elderly art dealer who shares the secret of artistry with him. Holden's performance is terrific. Jennifer Jones plays the muse.
The 1948 film was directed by William Dieterle, and it is extremely arty, as well as psychological. Almost an artistic film noir.
I give it five stars--for art lovers. If you are not interested in art, or the interior struggles of artistic souls, you may not like it at all...