The Divided Heart is a heart-breaking Ealing drama that retells the true story of Ivan Pirecnik, whose mother was deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp in WWII and, like 300 other babies and young children from Slovenia who were deemed “racially worthy”, was sent to Germany and adopted in a Nazi program known as Lebensborn.
Directed by Charles Crichton (The Lavender Hill Mob, The Avengers, A Fish Called Wanda) and starring Cornell Borchers (Never Say Goodbye), Yvonne Mitchell (Woman in a Dressing Gown, The Queen of Spades), Michel Ray (Lawrence of Arabia) and Armin Dahlen.
Franz and Inga Hartl (Armin Dahlen, Cornell Borchers) have brought up Toni (Michel Ray), who they believed to be a German war orphan, as their own child. He is ten years old when two officials from the International Refugee Organization visit them with the news that his actual mother Sonja (Yvonne Mitchell), a Yugoslavian woman, is alive and desperately wants him back. This heart-breaking courtroom drama was widely admired on its release and won three British Academy Film Awards.
Written by Jack Whittingham
Produced by Michael Balcon and Michael Truman
Cinematography by Otto Heller
Music by Georges Auric
For the 2022 restoration of The Divided Heart, STUDIOCANAL went back to the original camera negative which was scanned and restored in 4K to produce a brand new HD master