I am writing seven years after the fact to express my bafflement over the thought that the ending, which to me was as straightforward as an arrow shot from a bow, could ever be mistaken as ambiguous. 'Unfaithful' is an old fashioned morality tale, that moves in one direction almost vector-style. It is about a woman who allows a passing fancy to become an obsession, and finds the obsession devouring her entire life. Her husband ends up murdering her lover. He at first appears to have escaped consequences, but as the movie closes, it is apparent the crime will be discovered. At the end of the movie, the couple are talking in the car about love and their lives together - then the camera pans back to show they are outside a police station. To me, the thought that some have that they may run away, may not, is out of the question. The synopsis is dead wrong. This last dialog is not hopeful, but forlorn and anguished. All that they have had is irretrievably lost, due to the wife's foolishness and her husband's anger. Some members of the audience forget that characters in a movie are supposed to behave realistically. The couple in Unfaithful are far too entrenched in their upper middle class lives to have any genuine chance of flight. That last dialog is intended to underscore how much has been lost, and what devastating consequences the affair has had. It is NOT a discussion of possible alternative. The moment after the picture ends, the husband is going to surrender himself to the police. He really has no other choice. To me, this ending was sad, profound, and absolutely logical, the fitting end to a picture in which there had been a great deal of commentary on the risks of infidelity.
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A New York suburban couple's marriage goes dangerously awry when the wife indulges in an adulterous fling.
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April 10, 2019