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Unfaithful (2002)

The price paid for passion can sometimes be too high

Directed by:

Adrian Lyne

Rating: 7/10

Running Time: 118 minutes

UK Certificate: 15

On DVD

Country: United States

Diane Lane plays Connie Sumner, a happily married suburban housewife. She appears to have everything she could possibly want in her handsome and loving husband Edward (Richard Gere) and her fine son Charlie (Erik Per Sullivan). If there is any problem in her world, it is that her life is a little dull. However, her nice safe existence is shattered one day by a chance encounter on the street with book dealer Paul Martel (Olivier Martinez). Paul is French, exotic and exciting, and the two are immediately attracted to each other.

Diane is unable to resist temptation and quickly embarks on a passionate affair. As Diane and Paul get ever more extreme in their activities, Edward is starting to become suspicious. When he discovers that she is sometimes not where she says she is, he arranges for her to be followed. But when his suspicions have been confirmed, he will have to decide what to do next, and this will not be so easy. Ultimately there will be tragedy for all concerned.

This is fairly straightforward erotic drama of no great complexity and few surprises. The story is a familiar one, and nothing is really added here to make it stand out. However, it is far from being a disappointment. The strong cast do well with their roles, making the characters engaging and interesting – Lane received an Oscar nomination for her part. The movie also looks good – the production values are generally high and the direction is well above average. To add to the package, the music is particularly noteworthy and contributes significantly to the film.

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It's Got: Strong performances from all involved, especially Gere, Lane and Martinez.

It Needs: To be a lot less predictable.

DVD Extras The DVD includes a substantial collection of extras for a single-disc edition. Extras: Director’s commentary, Scene specific commentary with Diane Lane and Olivier Martinez, Deleted scenes, Alternative ending with optional commentary, Five featurettes, Interview with Diane Lane, Richard Gere and Adrian Lyne, Director’s notes, Trailer, Easter egg. DVD Extras Rating: 8/10

Alternatives:

Bitter Moon, Damage, Metroland

Summary

This is a workmanlike erotic thriller with some tension and a fair few effective moments but not many surprises. The strong cast are the main reason it rises above being merely average.

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