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The Astonished Heart (1950) DVD

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The Astonished Heart (1950)


Antony DarnboroughTerence Fisher    


Noel Coward (play)    


Celia JohnsonNoel CowardMargaret Leighton
With his previous collaborator David Lean busy on other own projects, Noel Coward had to rely on director Terence Fisher to bring his The Astonished Heart to the screen. Fisher and his stars--Celia Johnson, Margaret Leighton, and Coward himself--vividly convey the playwright's brittle, sophisticated view of the world. Coward stars as Christian Faber, a psychiatrist who falls in love with the much-younger Leonora Vail (Leighton). This means that Faber must convince himself that his blissful 10-year marriage to wife Barbara (Johnson) is truly at an end. Once he's made this compromise with his conscience, Faber further deteriorates into petulant jealousy when Leonora begins roaming. The surprise ending is all the more surprising because the audience is pulling for Faber (despite his emotional immaturity) and is hoping that he'll pull himself out of his self-imposed mess. In addition to writing and starring in The Astonished Heart, Noel Coward also composed the musical score.

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