The Captive Heart
The film inspired by the story
The Captive Heart is a 1946 British war drama, directed by Basil Dearden for Ealing Studios. The film was entered into the 1946 Cannes Film Festival. Set in a German POW camp after the Battle of Dunkirk in World War II, the plot centers on one of the prisoners. Captain Karel Hasek (Michael Redgrave), a Czech soldier who has escaped from a concentration camp and assumed the identity of a dead British prisoner, Captain Geoffrey Mitchell. Initially keeping to his false identity, he is soon unmasked by his fellow soldiers, suspicious of his command of the German language, but for safety, the SBO commands them to maintain the fiction.
To avoid being detected, he corresponds with Mitchell’s wife Celia (Rachel Kempson). Prior to the war, the Mitchells had a cool relationship, but the letters rekindle Celia’s love. When a Gestapo officer visits the camp, he thinks he recognises Hasek and the latter realises it is only a matter of time before he is unmasked. A plan is hatched to place Hasek’s name on a list of soldiers already approved for repatriation.
After Hasek “returns” to England, he meets Celia and breaks the news of her husband’s death. She realises that she has come to love Hasek and they decide to stay together. The film cast includes many fine character actors and many of the camp population were serving soldiers. One of the locations used was the ex-naval POW camp Marlag, near Westertimke, which had remained largely intact since the end of the war the previous year.
|Starring:||Michael Redgrave, Rachel Kempson, Jack Warner, Jimmy Hanley, Frederick Leicester, Mervyn Johns, Rachel Thomas|
|Released:||1946, on DVD 2007|
|Running Time:||94 minutes|