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Unfaithful

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Unfaithful
Unfaithful: Barry Wetcher

Unfaithful

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
124 minutes
Wide Release Date:
05/10/02
performer:
Richard Gere, Diane Lane, Chad Lowe, Olivier Martinez
director:
Adrian Lyne
distributor:
20th Century Fox Film Corporation
author:
William Broyles Jr., Susannah Grant
genre:
Mystery and Thriller, Drama

We gave it an A-

Four years after his pedophilic parrying with skittish distributors over ”Lolita,” Lyne is back with another sexually charged drama — but this time all the players are adults. Lane plays a suburban mom cheating on her suspicious husband (Gere) in a mattress-punishing affair with a French bookseller (”Before Night Falls”’ Martinez). Lawful love scenes or not, the controversy-prone director entered into the project (inspired by Claude Chabrol’s 1969 drama ”La Femme Infidèle”) prepared for battle. ”If you assume the worst will happen and take a position of total paranoia,” he says, ”then you probably won’t be disappointed.” (Ultimately, the steamy film emerged with an R rating.)

The bulk of the story falls on Lane’s bare shoulders, and, knowing the unabashed oeuvre of Lyne (who, with ”Fatal Attraction” and ”Indecent Proposal” under his belt, is to adultery what Michael Bay is to explosions), she knew that the sexual side of the affair would not be played down. ”I certainly thought he was the right director for the material, let’s put it that way,” she laughs. ”You just gotta jump in.” Although her erotic romps are all with Martinez, she does share one bathtub scene with her 1984 ”The Cotton Club” costar Gere, which was shot during his first week on set. ”I turned and looked at him and said, ‘If I had just met you last week, this would be such a drag, ”’ remembers Lane. ”’Instead it’s a riot.”’

As the quiet cuckold, Gere is playing the rare non-stud role; Lyne worked with the actor to remove all traces of cockiness, outfitting him in soccer-dad sweaters and diminishing his confident swagger. ”He kept reminding me,” says Gere. ”I’d put a little limp in the walk, just to take the athlete out.” Lyne knew Gere had successfully become the Milquetoast of the town when the actor’s girlfriend, actress Carey Lowell, stopped by one day. ”She came into wardrobe, and he looked anything but stylish,” says Lyne. ”She gave him a hug and said, ‘Oh, you’re just ordinary. You’re like a real person.’ I was thrilled with that.”