THE WIFE – My film of the Month – August 2019

by admin on August 1, 2019

The feminists among you are going to hate this film at first, but the hero gets his come-uppance by the end, so persevere.

The stereotype of the dutiful wife behind every great man, is stood on its head in this very satisfying film of a famous author and the woman who loyally supports him and turns a blind eye to his compulsive philandering.

It begins in medias res like all great stories, ‘in the middle of things,’ with a phone call in the middle of the night, informing the author he has been awarded the Nobel Prize for literature and inviting him to  Stockholm to receive it. What appears to be the high point of his career begins his downfall.

The author has been a university professor at an Ivy League college with endless opportunities for philandering with his admiring female students but little time for his own wife’s and son’s aspirations to become  writers.

Moving back and forth from past to present we gradually piece together how he has contrived to arrive at such an exalted peak in his life, at the expense of his wife and son.

From this point on we can only watch mesmerised, as his life crumbles apart despite his increasingly desperate attempts to hold it together. And we slowly realise the story is about his wife, not him.

A modern version of a Greek tragedy, with an ironic twist.

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