The Heart of the Matter

Watch The Heart of the Matter

  • Approved
  • 1954
  • 1 hr 40 min
  • 6.7  (526)

The Heart of the Matter is a 1953 film adaptation of a novel by British author Graham Greene. Directed by George More O'Ferrall, the movie stars Trevor Howard as Harry Scobie, a police officer stationed in Sierra Leone during World War II. Elizabeth Allan plays his wife Louise, while Maria Schell appears as Helen Rolt, a single woman who crosses Harry's path and complicates his life.

The film opens with Harry and Louise living in a small colonial town in Sierra Leone. Although Harry is respected by his colleagues and locals for his honesty and integrity, he is deeply unhappy in his marriage to Louise, who is increasingly distant and unaffectionate towards him. One day, Harry receives the news that he has been promoted and will soon be transferred to a larger town in the colony. However, Louise refuses to leave their home and insists on staying behind. Frustrated and lonely, Harry soon finds solace in the company of Helen Rolt, a woman he meets at a dinner party.

Helen is also lonely and struggling with her own personal demons. She is in Sierra Leone to take care of her father, a missionary who has fallen ill. Despite their different backgrounds and marital statuses, Harry and Helen are drawn to each other and begin an affair. However, Harry's actions do not go unnoticed, and before long he finds himself caught up in a web of lies and deceit that threatens to ruin his career and reputation.

As the war drags on, Harry becomes increasingly disillusioned with his life and the role he plays in Sierra Leone. He questions the morality of the British Empire and its treatment of the native population. He also reflects on his own mistakes and the pain he has caused to those closest to him. Through it all, the film explores themes of loyalty, faith, and the struggle to do what is right in a world plagued by conflict and suffering.

The Heart of the Matter is a powerful and thought-provoking film that stands the test of time. The performances by the cast are exceptional, particularly Trevor Howard as Harry Scobie. His portrayal of a man torn between his duty and his desires is nuanced and complex. The movie is beautifully shot, capturing the lush landscapes of Sierra Leone and the intimate moments between the characters. The script is faithful to the original novel and delivers a story that is both inspiring and tragic.

Overall, The Heart of the Matter is a must-see for fans of classic cinema and Graham Greene's writing. It is a tale of love and loss, of compassion and sacrifice, and of the human spirit's search for meaning in a world full of turmoil.

The Heart of the Matter
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 40 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.7  (526)