A Faithful Man | Chicago Reader

A Faithful Man

Louis Garrel cowrote, directed, and stars in this piquant chamber comedy, which begins as the sort of relationship chronicle that his father, Philippe, might make, then enters into strange territory that’s reminiscent of what cowriter Jean-Claude Carrière once explored with Luis Buñuel. In the opening scene, the live-in girlfriend (Laetitia Casta) of a journalist (Garrel) tells him she’s leaving him for his best friend, who’s gotten her pregnant. The story then jumps forward a decade, after the best friend has died of mysterious circumstances and the former couple has resumed their old relationship as though they’d never been apart. Things go well until the woman’s son confides in the journalist that he believes his mother murdered his father and the dead man’s younger sister (Lily-Rose Depp)—who’s long loved the journalist from afar—decides to steal him away from his current partner. The narrative twists come off as especially odd, thanks to Garrel’s poker-faced direction and the uniformly naturalistic performances; all the characters seem like normal people except that their behavior is unexplainable. In French with subtitles

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