Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment (1966) starring David Warner, Vanessa Redgrave, Robert Stephens, Irene Handl, Bernard Bresslaw, Arthur Mullard directed by Karel Reisz Movie Review

Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment (1966)   3/53/53/53/53/5

David Warner in Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment (1966)

The Manic Mind of Morgan

I had known about "Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment" for quite a while before watching it as this is one of those movies from the 60s which became a cult classic but then was forgotten about. But to be honest the synopsis I read made it appear a bit too strange but also a movie which was heavy in social depth which from previous experience I know doesn't always come across when watched out of context. I was wrong as "Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment" is just daft from beginning to end and if there was some attempt to deliver some sort of social commentary through its context it is lost under all the daftness.

After agreeing to go and stay in Greece till his wife Leonie (Vanessa Redgrave - Letters to Juliet) finalises their divorce Morgan (David Warner - Ladies in Lavender) returns early determined to win her back and stop her seeing art dealer Charles Napier (Robert Stephens). The trouble is that whilst Leonie loves Morgan his left wing politics and eccentric, artist life style as well as a fascination with gorillas makes him impossible to live with.

Vanessa Redgrave in Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment (1966)

So here we have an incredibly simple storyline as Morgan having agreed not to oppose his wife Leonie from divorcing him then returns to try and prevent her marrying someone else whilst winning her back. These endeavours include putting a skeleton in her bed with roses stuck in its eyes to showing up at Napier's gallery with a gun to try and ward him off. But in between all of this we also have the other elements and there is Morgan's fascination with animals especially gorillas which he often imitates especially when he sees a ticket seller at a train station yawn and it reminds him of a hippo yawning. There are others as well as scaffolders reminding him off primates swinging from trees and with numerous flashes of actual animals it is all very quirky.

That brings me to the heart of the storyline because thanks to good performances from Vanessa Redgrave and David Warner you get a real sense that they are so in love with each other but at the same time so incompatible because of Morgan's wild side and her upper class life style. The scene where Leonie discovers Morgan in her home and she playfully runs from him is so wonderfully played out that in those few seconds you understand everything about them. And it has to be said that David Warner as Morgan inhabits this movie with a performance so full on, so visual but not cheesy that it is hard not to enjoy every second of it despite bordering on the wacko. Plus for fans of old British cinema the likes of Irene Handl, Bernard Bresslaw and Arthur Mullard appear in minor roles.

What this all boils down to is that "Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment" is a bit of wacky 60's British cinema which is so daft that if there had been any attempt to make some sort of deep social statement it is lost under all the quirkiness.