Watch Map of the Human Heart

"Born in the magic of youth. Forged by the passions of war. Their love knew no boundaries."

Starring John Cusack, “Map of the Human Heart” is a 1993 New Zealand drama directed by Vincent Ward. Told primarily in flashback, from the viewpoint of a Canadian Inuit boy named Avik, it partly chronicles the firebombing of Dresden during World War II, and Avik's subsequent attempts to reconcile his present with his past. The movie co-stars Robert Joamie, Jason Scott Lee, Anne Parillaud, and Clothilde Courau.

John Cusack is a map maker who visits an Eskimo village where he meets the aging Avik. Avik tells him the story of his life. Flashback to 1931: Avik lives with his grandmother in an Arctic-Canadian settlement called Nuntaaq. One day, while accompanying a British cartographer, Avik contracts tuberculosis. The cartographer escorts the boy to a clinic, where Avik meets an Indian half-breed named Albertine. They exchange their deepest, darkest secrets, though their brief, intense pubescent love is momentarily squashed by the Mother Superior overseeing the clinic. Avik returns to his life, carrying an X-ray of Albertine's chest and memories of her face.

World War II breaks out; Avik becomes an aerial photographer for the British, covering the Dresden firebombing. In London during the war, Avik reconnects with Albertine, now a vivacious and stunning young women. He is still very much in love with her and she with him. Problem: Albertine is involved with Russell, the cartographer Avik tagged along with so many years prior. In fact, she is Russell's mistress. Avik and Albertine begin having an affair nevertheless, and their love scenes occur in places like concert halls and barrage balloons.

Russell discovers this affair and, still Avik's military commander, sends Avik and his crew on a dangerous mission. All of Avik's crew is killed, and he makes his way to Canda and begins a new life. Unbeknownst to him, Albertine bears him a daughter. Avik sinks into depression and turns to drink. His daughter locates him, and the future promises to be brighter.

| 1993 | 1 hr 49 min | 7.1/10 | 71/100
Jason Scott Lee, Robert Joamie, Anne Parillaud, Annie Galipeau
Vincent Ward
Produced By
Tim Bevan, Vincent Ward

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