If we only cared about the characters....
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 01/04/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Belgian Carl Colpaert has a solid reputation as the founder of CINEVILLE Releasing, as a producer of some very fine small films (Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont, Where Eskimos Live, Surviving Eden, Hurlyburly, etc) and has directed and written a few less interesting ones. This film THE AFFAIR (originally titled TOPANGA) tries hard to be a European flavored examination of relationships, but for this viewer it falls short not only in story (scripted by Colpaert and Lisa Larrivee) and in a fuzzy cast of TV actors, but also in the directorial stance of being in control of a story that needs a lot of attention.
Jean (Kelsey Oldershaw) is a bored housewife living in a designer house with her architect husband Paul (Horacio Le Don), a man of success who is so self-centered and controlling that he forgets his relationship obligations to his wife. Jean has residual scars from a traumatic childhood experience and her needs go beyond the wifely role, searching for some degree of excitement, passion and fulfillment not available in her marriage. At a local dance club she meets Viggo (Andy Mackenzie), a bohemian passionate, live for the moment guy who sweeps Jean off her feet in an affair that produces disaster in her marriage. The story concentrates on the intricacies of this love triangle, offering alternative ways to approach love, needs, and responsibilities.
The notion is solid (if quite over used) and there are aspects of the film that suffuse the atmosphere with tension and artsy techniques. But in the end the story and the actors elude our concern and we are left feeling like window peeping voyeurs, wondering why we are sneaking a peek.
Grady Harp, January 06
A Great Concept Movie
Wendall Clark | 09/02/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Well, I loved this movie. I loved the way the director and actors negotiated the trepidations of the story and the way Jean and Viggo discovered themselves. This is an all around great story about humanity and a must-see for anyone searching for love.
A Truly Beautiful Film
Louis Black | 09/01/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The atmosphere in The Affair is dreamlike, accentuating the characters' internal feelings and how they see their surroundings, rather than simply showing the city as it really is. The film's greatest strength comes from its sad wisdom about relationships and the way its protagonists recognize how precarious their connection is."