That Uncertain Feeling (film)

That Uncertain Feeling is a 1941 American comedy film directed by Ernst Lubitsch and starring Merle Oberon, Melvyn Douglas and Burgess Meredith. The film is about the bored wife of an insurance salesman who meets an eccentric pianist and seeks a divorce. The screenplay by Walter Reisch and Donald Ogden Stewart was based on the 1880 French play Divorçons by Victorien Sardou and Émile de Najac.

That Uncertain Feeling
Theatrical poster
Directed byErnst Lubitsch
Produced byErnst Lubitsch
Sol Lesser (uncredited)
Written byWalter Reisch
Donald Ogden Stewart
Based onDivorçons
1880 play
by Victorien Sardou
Emile de Najac
StarringMerle Oberon
Melvyn Douglas
Burgess Meredith
Music byWerner R. Heymann
CinematographyGeorge Barnes
Edited byWilliam Shea
Ernst Lubitsch Productions
Sol Lesser Productions
Distributed byUnited Artists
Release date
  • April 20, 1941 (1941-04-20) (United States)
Running time
84 minutes
CountryUnited States


At the suggestion of one of her friends, Jill Baker visits psychoanalyst Dr. Vengard for her intermittent hiccups, which appear when she gets nervous or irritated. He soon has her questioning her previously happy marriage to her business executive husband Larry.

In Vengard's waiting room one day, Jill meets a very odd and individualistic pianist, Alexander Sebastian. He considers himself the best in the world when playing for a single listener, but has trouble performing in front of a large audience. She eventually invites him to an important dinner for Larry's prospective insurance buyers. When Larry realizes that Jill is infatuated with Sebastian, he gives her a friendly divorce, in which Larry is represented by a lawyer named Jones whose secretary is Sally Aikens.

Jill gets engaged to Sebastian, but after she learns that Larry is seeing an attractive woman, she realizes that she still loves her ex-husband. When she visits his apartment to reconcile with him, he goes into the next room and talks loudly, pretending Sally Aikens is in the room and that she is his girlfriend. His deception is revealed when Sally enters the apartment while he is in the next room breaking a dinner date with the distraught "Sally" (her supposed cries of anguish voiced by Larry). Jill and Larry get back together, and her hiccups vanish forever.



The film was a failure at the box office.

Award and honors

Werner R. Heymann was nominated for an Oscar for Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic Picture.

See also


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