FAITHFUL brings Cher back to the big screen after a six year absence to tackle a dialogue rich-role in a movie based on a stage play. Cher plays Margaret, a rich, yet sad woman married to workaholic Jack, played by Ryan O’Neal. Jack is having an affair with his assistant Debbie, while Margaret whiles away the days in quiet desperation. On their 20th Wedding Anniversary, Tony shows up and says he was hired by Jack to kill her. Tony hesitates and decides to call his shrink, who tries to persuade Tony not to kill Margaret, so Tony gets confused. As Tony waits to kill Margaret, he talks to her about marriage, commitment, faithfulness, sex, and emotional healing. Jack returns at night, and all three get into an argument. With each unexpected revelation, we wonder who is telling the truth and who is lying.
Unfolding like a stage production, FAITHFUL is reminiscent in many ways of Hitchcock’s DIAL M FOR MURDER. Witty, insightful and never boring, it is a good match for the art house crowd. Cher seems to be uncomfortable and stilted in her language, which is sometime foul. This movie may provide some discussion for the cerebral audience member, but it will not be a widely accessible, nor a likeable movie for the general crowd. The movie is claustrophobic and will not provide any thrill rides for the casual moviegoer.
(B, LLL, V, S, D, M) Moral examination of the ramifications of being faithful in marriage; 47 obscenities & 20 vulgarities; mild violence including attempted suicide, threats with gun, threats of rape, & gunfire with implied murder; talk of infidelity & woman asks man to have an adulterous affair, but no sex; no nudity; smoking; and, kidnapping