Synopsis by Tom Vick
This short feature by Satyajit Ray, based on a story by Premendra Mitra, stars Soumitra Chatterjee as Amitabha Roy, a Calcutta screenwriter whose car breaks down during a research trip out in the country. A local tea baron offers him a place to stay for the night, and Amitabha is surprised to find that the baron's wife, Karuna (Madhabi Mukherjee), is the woman he had been in love with years before, and lost because of his own indecisiveness. Amitabha realizes that he is still in love with her, and spends the evening and much of the next day trying to steal moments alone with her to find out what she sees in her boorish husband, and talk her into leaving him. But Karuna remains tauntingly enigmatic until the end. The Coward is often shown with another short Ray feature, The Holy Man.