"Is the Truth Worth Knowing?"
THE OTHER MAN is a fairly engaging drama about a man named Peter who discovers his wife was cheating on him and, feeling hurt and vengeful, decides to hunt down the “other” man in order to learn the truth about the affair. The movie contains strong performances as well as redemptive content with the main character ultimately forgiving his wife and the man with whom she had an affair, but some unnecessary sexual content and light pagan overtones prevent it from being as good as it could have been.
The story opens on middle-aged businessman Peter (played by Liam Neeson), who appears to have a good marriage with his wife, Lisa (played by Laura Linney). Then, Peter discovers a message on her phone from a mysterious man interested in reviving a past adulterous relationship. Shocked, outraged and vengeful, Peter begins to investigate his wife’s apparent past affair.
Using her phone and laptop as starting points in his search for the “other” man, he tries to gain access to a private file on her laptop. He succeeds in doing so, only to find photographs of her and a man named Ralph (played by Antonio Banderas). Also in the file, he discovers emails sent back and forth between her and Ralph during the time of their affair, along with a recent email from Ralph trying to contact her because he wants to revive their relationship.
Interested in learning the truth about his wife and this man Ralph, Peter begins to email Ralph while pretending to be his wife Lisa in order to gain more information. He even enlists a co-worker to track down Ralph’s home address in Milan. Upon learning this information and against the pleadings of his estranged daughter, Abigail (played by Romola Garai), Peter travels to Italy and befriends Ralph without revealing his identity, all the while continuing to send emails to Ralph under the guise of his wife, Lisa. His efforts to keep his identity a secret become increasingly difficult as his anger and vengefulness grows.
THE OTHER MAN takes a couple of twists toward the end where Peter finally reveals himself to Ralph, and the audience learns what actually happened to Lisa. In the end, Peter decides to forgive his wife even though he might not understand the reasons for her actions. He also decides to forgive Ralph. He even goes a step further and works to mend his tense relationship with his daughter.
THE OTHER MAN, though developed on a smaller budget, contains decent production values with commendable character portrayals by the actors. The plot seems a bit jumpy at times, and the actions of the characters aren’t always fully explained, which may indicate a need for better character development by the writers. It is also left ambiguous as to whether the wife regretted her adulterous affair, although it is clear she intends for her husband to eventually discover the truth.
Although THE OTHER MAN contains some redemptive, moral content with Peter forgiving his wife and Ralph, and even reconciling with his daughter, the movie’s sexual content and pagan elements keep the movie from being as wholesome and rewarding as it could have been.
(B, C, Pa, L, S, NN, A, D, MM) Light moral, redemptive worldview where man ends up forgiving his wife and the man she had an affair with, but sprinkled with some pagan elements with one character and her boyfriend living together, woman has adulterous affair, man considers revenge as a viable option for getting back at the man who had an affair with his wife, woman insists that love is a choice and that if she didn’t love her husband she would leave him, and it is ambiguous as to whether wife regretted her immoral actions; nine obscenities and no profanities; no violence; implied married sex where couple is shown in bed together afterwards, implied adultery, some kissing, and man gropes wife’s chest; upper female nudity in photographs in a sexual context, two instances of rear female nudity, and frontal male nudity but with certain parts strategically covered by towel; alcohol use depicted as characters drink wine with dinner; one instance of smoking a cigarette depicted; and, girl lives with her boyfriend, character hunts down the man who had an affair with his wife in order to better understand her actions and to also seek revenge, but this is resolved when he decides to let go and forgive the man and his wife, and some lying and deceit that are eventually resolved.
THE OTHER MAN is a fairly engaging drama about a middle-aged businessman named Peter, who appears to have a good marriage, but soon discovers a mysterious man wants to renew a past adulterous relationship with Peter’s wife, Lisa. Shocked, outraged and vengeful, Peter decides to hunt down the “other” man in order to learn the truth about the affair. He even goes so far as befriending the man and sending him emails pretending to be his wife. The game he plays culminates when Peter must decide whether he will hold onto his anger or forgive.
THE OTHER MAN, despite a smaller budget, contains decent production values with fine acting. The plot seems a bit jumpy at times. Also, the actions of the characters aren’t always fully explained, which may indicate a need for better character development by the writers. The script is also ultimately ambiguous as to whether the wife regretted her adulterous affair, although it’s clear she wants her husband to discover the truth eventually. The movie has redemptive, moral content, including forgiveness and reconciliation, but its sexual content and pagan elements keep it from being more wholesome.