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The Heart of Me (2002)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  2 May 2003 (UK)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 1,917 users   Metascore: 53/100
Reviews: 24 user | 39 critic | 24 from

1930's London. Two sisters - Madeleine and Dinah - One marries Rickie, the other falls in love with him. He begins an affair which is to have repercussions throughout their lives.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mrs. Burkett
Tom Ward ...
Gillian Hanna ...
Alison Reid ...
Katy Maw ...
Sylvia (as Kathryn Tennant-Maw)
Rebecca Charles ...
Miss Matthews
Shaughan Seymour ...
Simon Day ...
Hospital Doctor
Jenny Howe ...


In the 1930s Ricky Masters, an English businessman, marries Madeleine, a fine match socially, but the cultured aesthete is more and more attracted to her sister Dinah, a 'Bohemian' painter, and as they spend time together their affair becomes physical, even all the way; yet when she gets pregnant they decide to leave his marriage intact. He raises his son with Madeleine, who tells him only in 1946 that she knew after he had a car accident during a 'business trip' to southern France that caused Dinah to loose her unborn daughter; now Ricky wants to leave Madeleine, but she refuses a divorce; after a time in hospital he is told Dinah chose to move back to France without him while she's really living in London, still not the last twist of the drama... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Every pleasure has a price... See more »


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

2 May 2003 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Erotiko adiexodo  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£52,466 (UK) (2 May 2003)


$196,067 (USA) (3 October 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One of the cars used in this movie is a 1931 Austin 7 box saloon. See more »


Dinah: And throughout all Eternity I forgive you, you forgive me
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thanks to the residents of Fitzroy Square. See more »


The Very Thought of You
Written by Ray Noble
Performed by Al Bowlly with Ray Noble and His Orchestra
Published by Campbell Connelly & Co. Ltd.
By Arrangement with Past Perfect Vintage Music
See more »

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User Reviews

Brilliantly acted drama
31 May 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

`The Heart of Me' is pure, unadulterated soap opera redeemed by the kind of high-toned, stiff-upper-lip seriousness of which the British seem uniquely capable. Set primarily in the 1930's, the film tells the story of two sisters caught in a passionate and quasi-incestuous love triangle. Madeline (Olivia Williams), the older of the two, is an uptight woman whose weak-willed husband, Rickie (Paul Bettany), falls in love with her younger and more free-spirited sibling, Dinah (Helena Bonham Carter). These two in-laws, soul mates for life, carry on a torrid love affair until Madeline discovers the truth – and even for a time thereafter.

Given the material, `The Heart of Me' could easily have devolved into a cheap, sensationalistic melodrama for the `Masterpiece Theatre' set. Instead, thanks to truly brilliant performances by the three principal actors and an intelligent, thoughtful screenplay, the film becomes a wholly absorbing drama that offers profound insights into the realities of the human heart. The pain each of these people experiences is so palpable in its intensity that it washes away all traces of artificiality and contrivance. The film becomes a fascinating study of what happens when clanging passions are hemmed in by the restrictions and proprieties of a strict, morally repressive upper class society. Rickie and Dinah choose to turn themselves into social pariahs, then must face the consequences of their convention-defying actions. Of most interest is the emotionally complex relationship between the two very different sisters. What makes the film special is the way in which it allows the seemingly cold-hearted Madeline to become as much a sympathetic figure as the two impassioned lovers. Thanks to Williams' impeccable performance (she played Penelope in the TV movie version of `The Odyssey'), Madeline is allowed to live and breathe and have her own say, making her, in many ways, the most intriguing of the three main characters.

`The Heart of Me,' which is beautifully detailed in costumes and settings, transcends the limits of its genre to deliver a heartbreaking tale of love, loss, lament - and hope.

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