A Stolen Life is a film I kind of dragged my heels to see once I found out Bette Davis plays twins. The only time having twins as a plot worked for me was Olivia de Havilland in The Dark Mirror, it worked so well and de Havilland just completely nailed it. I had seen Davis play twins in Dead Ringer and she was alright in that. I gave and watched A Stolen Life once I realized Glenn Ford is in it and I have been on a Glenn Ford kick as of late.
Kate Bosworth (Davis… yes her name is Kate Bosworth) missed her boat from mainland Massachusetts to an island her family has a house on. She asks a man named Bill Emerson (Ford) who has his own boat to take her. He is not thrilled about the idea but he gives in and takes her. They wind up having a good time together.
Bill has taken a job at the lighthouse. Kate knows the lighthouse keeper and follows him around to get some information on Bill and to allow her up to the lighthouse. She notices the keeper wants an expensive ship in a bottle. She buys the bottled ship for the keeper and he lets her come up. For the afternoon Kate walks around the lighthouse since she cannot leave due to a heavy fog. Bill confesses he took the job to get away from people. She confesses she came to see him. Bill takes Kate home. He tells her he took a new job somewhere else but he will not be away long.
When Kate gets back home her twin sister Pat is sitting in her room. While Kate is nice and quiet and keeps to herself you can tell right away that Pat is not very kind to her sister and does not have any good intentions in mind. Kate does not tell her sister about meeting Bill. Unfortunately Pat does meet Bill. He thinks she is her sister. Pat likes Bill too mostly because her sister really likes him. She follows him on a train up to Boston and Kate has no idea. At a dance one night Kate’s uncle says something about her being ahead of her sister for once. It seems that Pat is always stepping all over Kate.
Eventually Kate asks Pat what Bill means to her. Pat says that she is crazy about Bill and he is crazy about her. Bill and Pat get married. Kate goes to live in New York City to paint and exhibit her work. She goes home one weekend and finds her sister is at the house. Pat talks her into going out on their boat for the afternoon. They get caught in a sudden storm that tosses the waves mercilessly. Pat gets thrown overboard Kate tries to save her sister but the waves are too strong and drag Pat under.
Kate is found by the lighthouse keeper. They think she is Pat because she has her sister’s wedding ring and keeps calling out for Bill. Kate plays along being Pat because now she is married to Bill. She finds out that not everything in her sister’s life was good. She tries to fix things but all her plans backfire.
In the end Bill finds out about Kate and they fall back in love again.
I have a love/hate thing with Bette Davis. Sometimes I think she is brilliant and awesome and other times she drives me up a wall. Davis was alright. I hated her playing Pat, I am sure we as the way Davis played characters like Pat throughout her career. I liked how she played Kate who was reserved and quiet yet had some kind of strength. Seriously I am all over the map with how I feel about Bette Davis as an actress I am sure what I just said made absolutely no sense. Glenn Ford was perfect. I love him as an actor. He was sensitive yet tough.
A Stolen Life was a crappy two hour Warner Bros. romantic drama. I was bored the whole time. I think the film could have ended sooner than it did there were so many scenes that could have been taken out. Only watch A Stolen Life if you are a fan of either Bette Davis or Glenn Ford.